CIC Upholds PMO Decision to Not Release Netaji Files

CIC Upholds PMO Decision to Not Release Netaji Files

The Central Information Commission has upheld the Prime Minister's Office contention that releasing secret files about Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose's wife and daughter may upset foreign countries.

Chief Information Commissioner Rajiv Mathur has disposed the appeal by researcher Chandrachur Ghose which challenged the PMO's decision of not giving access to the letters written by Netaji's wife and daughter to the government.

"In view of the above, and CPIO's submission that due diligence has been exercised, we uphold the decision of the CPIO/AA in denying the information," the CIC said in its decision.

In 2013, the PMO had said that these files are exempt from disclosure under Section 8(1)(a) read with section 8(2) of the Right to Information Act, 2005.

"The three files in question are classified and disclosure of the documents contained in them would prejudicially affect relations with foreign countries," the PMO said in its reply.

Ghose, who is writing a biography on the nationalist leader, said, "Keeping these files secret would also fuel conspiracy theories, in view of controversy regarding Netaji's marriage in certain quarters".

When under house arrest by the British, Netaji had escaped from India in 1941 to seek international support for India’s freedom struggle. After organising the Indian National Army with Japanese help he went missing in 1945, fuelling one of the most debated and puzzling mysteries.

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