The Central Information Commission (CIC) has said that under RTI (Right to Information), a woman can ask for information about her husband’s income. Such information has to be made available to the wife within 15 days. The CIC has ruled in favour of the wife seeking information related to the husband’s income tax return.
What was the case?
According to the information, a woman had sought information on her husband’s 2017-18 income tax return under the RTI on 28 November 2018. The Central Public Information Officer (CPIO) declined to provide information. The woman then filed a case with the CIC.
Income, personal information cannot be shared with third party
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Counsel for CPIO Ramji Lal Meena argued that the information sought by the woman is private, which cannot be disclosed to the third party under section 8 (1) (j) of the RTI Act. He said that the woman’s husband refused to provide information on this basis. At the same time, Rajak’s Hyder pleaded on behalf of the woman.
The commission referred to the decision of the High Court
The CEC, citing old decisions of the High Court, said in the case of Rehmat Banu vs CPIO, that the wife has the right to know the taxable income or gross income of the husband.
The commission directed the husband to give general details of taxable-income and gross income, which are available in the details of 2017-2018. This information should be given within 15 days. The commissioner also said that apart from this, there is no need to disclose any personal information of the third party.