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Disclose ITR details under RTI act is not allowed of any individual

Disclosing ITR details of some individual is matter of privacy and it is not allowed in RTI act but it can be allowed if it is in public interest. 

In this case, the petitioner had sought copies of memos, SCNs and censure/punishment awarded to the third respondent from his employer and also details of his investments, lendings, borrowing, gifts received movable and immovable properties. The information sought for usually finds a place in the income tax returns. In this regard, the question that came up for consideration before the Supreme Court was whether the above-mentioned information sought for qualified to be "personal information" as defined in clause (j) of Section 8(1) of the RTI Act.

The Supreme Court dismissed the plea of petitioner on following grounds:
1) The performance of an employee/officer in an organization is primarily a matter between the employee and the employer, the disclosure of which has no relationship to any public activity or public interest;

2) Thus, the details called for by the petitioner, i.e., copies of all memos issued to the third respondent, show cause notices and orders of censure/punishment etc. was qualified to be 'personal information' which was exempted from disclosure;

3) The details disclosed by a person in his income tax return were also "personal information" and thus exempted from disclosure;

4) The disclosure of personal information could cause unwarranted invasion of privacy of that individual. However, the disclosure is possible only if the larger public interest justifies the disclosure of such information.
The petitioner had not succeeded in establishing that the information sought for was for the larger public interest. Therefore, SLP filed by petitioner was dismissed - GIRISH RAMCHANDRA DESHPANDE v. CENTRAL INFORMATION COMMISSIONER [2012] 25 taxmann.com 525 (SC)

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