STATE TIMES NEWS JAMMU: Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), the Government owned telecom company, has refused to share information about mobile internet ban in Jammu and Kashmir citing exemption clause of Right to Information Act. In his online application dated November 7, 2019, RTI activist Raman Sharma had asked BSNL about the name and designation of the authority, officer of the state or union government on whose instructions, directions, order the mobile internet services are presently barred by BSNL in Jammu and Kashmir. He had also asked for certified copy of the order issued by the Union or State Government of Jammu and Kashmir asking Telecom Company to stop mobile internet facility in J&K. The rejection order signed by DGM (CM) of BSNL J&K Circle dated December 6, 2019 stated that the asked information falls under Section 8-1 of Right to Information Act 2005 and cannot be provided however the Public Information Officer has provided a gazette notification issued by the Union Government dated August 7, 2017 which reads that under Section 7 of the Indian Telegraph Act 1885, the Union Government may make rules for temporary suspension of telecom services (Public Emergency or Public Safety). Reacting over the reply by BSNL, the applicant expressed displeasure and said that the reply is vague and does not fall under exemption clause of RTI Act as in his RTI request, he had simply asked the name and designation of the authority who ordered ban and demanded copy of the order, ordering such ban and had not asked for reasons of the same.
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