RTI plea denied; Perarivalan questions Sanjay Dutt’s letter

First Published 6, Dec 2018, 7:22 PM IST
RTI plea denied; Perarivalan questions Sanjay Dutt's letter
Highlights

One of the convicts of Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, Perarivalan, is seeking information on Sanjay Dutt’s early release and questioned a letter given to the Yerwada central prison in 2015 by the actor to maintain his privacy.

Chennai: Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt was convicted under the Arms act for his involvement in the case of the Mumbai 1993 bomb-blasts.  While serving a five-year sentence at the Yerwada prison he was released three months prior to his jail term on good conduct.

A G Perarivalan is seeking information on the actor’s case to help in his release. Perarivalan is serving life-imprisonment term after being found guilty in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. Perarivalan is seeking information on Sanjay Dutt’s case through the RTI Act. However, the authorities at the jail refused to provide information because of a letter given by Dutt. The letter states, “I, Sanjay Dutt, hereby request your kind self not to give out any personal information without my knowledge. I hope you do the needful.” It was dated September 5, 2015 and was addressed to the information officer at Yerwada Central Prison.       

During a hearing, on the request of Perarivalan, before the Information Commission on Wednesday the matter was discussed. The letter was questioned by Nilesh Ukey, representing lawyer of Perarivalan, who asked if inmates can take such government decisions.

Responding to the request, the jail officials of Yerwada prison submitted a copy of exemption from disclosing information which was given by the State Prison Department to the jails in Maharashtra. They also quoted the section 8 (j) of RTI Act that provides exemption from disclosure of information as their defence.    

The Commission after hearing the both the sides refrained its order. 

According to The Times of India, Ukey said, “Since Dutt and Perarivalan cases were similar, we sought information to benefit our client to secure his release”.  Commenting on the Commission’s decision, the lawyer also said that the state government gave special treatment to Dutt, who was convicted under Arms Act while Perarivalan was exempted from Terror and Disruptive Activities (TADA) charges.

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