Justice Balakrishnan objects to disclosures of tax returns

Written by: Pti
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Kochi, Feb 14 (PTI) Income Tax authorities here havedeclined to reveal details of tax returns filed by NationalHuman Rights Commission head Justice K G Balakrishnan andseven family members on an application under the Right toInformation Act after the former CJI objected to disclosures.

The application was filed by T Balachandran followingallegations of accmmulation of wealth disproprotionate toknown sources of income against the family members of JusticeBalakrishnan.

The applicant had sought information and documents,certified copies of IT returns submitted by JusticeBalakrishnan for 2005-06 to 2009-10, details of investigationand inquiry by the department against him and his son, K BPradeep, two daughters -- Sony and Rani, sons-in law M J Bennyand P V Sreenijan and brother K G Bhaskaran.

He had also sought certified copies of reports andrelated documents with file notes relating to theinvestigation and inquiry conducted by the IT department, ifany.

The IT department had isued a letter to JusticeBalakrishnan to furnish his objections in connection withdisclosure of the documents.

Justice Balakrishnan filed a letter dated February 5stating that disclosure of information sought is exempt fromdisclosure as per Sect 8(i) of the RTI act, 2005.

"Information which relates to personal information,disclosure of which has no relationship to any public activityor interest or which would cause unwarranted invasion ofprivacy of the individual are completely exempt fromdisclosure unless the Central Public Information officer orstate Public Information Officer of the appellate authority,asthe case may be, is satisfied that the larger public interestjustified the disclosure of such information", he stated.

Rejecting the application, K Sudhakaran Pillai, CentralPublic Information Officer and Income Tax Oficer, ward 3(1),Kochi, said nothing in the applcation states how disclosure ofthe information would serve the larger public interest.

The applicant''s counsel advocate D B Binu said they wouldfile an appeal against the order within 30 days.

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