Indian Air Force cannot share information about Prime Minister’s air travel: Delhi High Court

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New Delhi, 11 December: The Delhi High Court has stayed the order of the Central Information Commissioner (CIC) ordering the Indian Air Force (IAF) to share information related to the Prime Minister’s air travel under the Right to Information Act.

A bench of Justice Naveen Chawla issued notice to RTI applicant Commodore Lokesh K Batra and also directed to file the reply in two weeks.

The Chief Information Officer of the Air Force had filed a petition challenging the CIC’s order of July 8, 2020 directing the Chief Information Officer of the Air Force to give information related to the Special Flight Returns-1 and 2 to the applicant.

In fact, Commodore Lokesh’s Batra had asked the Air Force for information related to Special Flight Returns-1 and 2 in the application filed under RTI.

Lokesh Batra had demanded to provide copies of Special Flight Returns-1 and 2 related to the foreign travel of current Prime Minister Narendra Modi and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The petition states that the information sought by Batra cannot be given as it pertains to the entire security cordon.

In this application, the names of SPG personnel engaged in protecting the Prime Minister have also been asked. If this information is disclosed, it could harm the Prime Minister’s security as well as India’s strategic, scientific and economic interests.

The petition said that the CIC in its order has violated Section 24 (1) and Section 8 (1) (g) of the RTI Act.