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Rafale Deal: SC Reserves It’s Order, Says, ‘RTI Applicable For Sensitive Info In Cases Of Corruption’

PRERNA YADAV | 0
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| March 14 , 2019 , 17:32 IST

The Supreme Court on Thursday reserved its order on whether it would examine the documents submitted by Prashant Bhushan and others in the review petitions filed in the Rafale deal and told Attorney General KK Venugopal, appearing for the Centre that the RTI Act is applicable for sensitive information in cases of corruption.

The Narendra Modi-led Union government claimed privilege over documents pertaining to Rafale fighter jet deal and told the Supreme Court that no one can produce them in the court without the permission of the department concerned.

Public Interest Lawyer Prashant Bhushan, who was also present during the hearing, told the court that the documents have been published and are already in the public domain.

He said, "Even the CAG report filed by Centre deals with defense purchases. All kinds of defense details are given. So for the government to say that the Supreme Court shouldn't decide is an unstateable argument."

CJI Gogoi asked Bhushan to focus on the preliminary objections, regarding the admissibility of the leaked documents. "Once we get over the A-G's preliminary objections, we can hear you on other aspects.”

ALSO READ: Rafale Documents Not Stolen From Defence Ministry, Petitioners Used Photocopies: Attorney General

The government's argument is that petitioners asking for a review based on confidential documents are violating the Official Secrets Act. During the last hearing of the Rafale case, the government had admitted the documents were stolen from the "Defence ministry".