Saturday, April 17, 2021
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Madabhushi Sridhar gets LL.D.

  • Sc’s pocket pistol decision in Girish Ramachandra case
  • It killed thousands of RTI applications everyday across the country
  • Andhra varsity awards LL.D. for his research on the SC order

Prof Madabhushi Sridhar Acharyulu has researched and established how an order of Supreme Court (in Girish Ramachandra Deshpande) killing thousands of RTI applications and appeals almost every day throughout the nation – both at centre and states, in his thesis titled “Judicial Legislation on Privacy versus Parliamentary Enactment on Right to Information: Its impact on the Governance by the Executive in India, (With special reference to Section 8(1)(j) of Right to Information Act and judgment of Supreme Court in Girish Ramachandra Deshpande), for which Damodaram Sanjeevayya National Law University has awarded him the highest research degree in law, the LL.D, which is at par with D.Lit. in other subjects, during recent Convocation.

The 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th Convocation of DSNLU was convened on 4th April 2021, wherein Justice N V Ramana, the designate of Chief Justice of India delivered Convocation Address. Dr. Madabhushi Sridhar, who achieved Doctorate in 1994 for his thesis on Media Law from Osmania University was awarded the LL.D. in this convocation from the Chancellor of DSNLU, Chief Justice of Andhra Pradesh High Court. His thesis is about the vital conflict between right to information and right to privacy.  Dr Sridhar defended his research based on his practical experience in deciding second appeals under RTI Act, during his term as Central Information Commission between 2013 and 2018.

Cover page of the thesis ‘Privacy as secrecy’

There is one order of Supreme Court preceded by two decisions of CIC and followed by another CIC order, supported by an Office Memorandum issued by DoPT the nodal agency at national level supposed to implement RTI Act severely damaged the objectives of RTI Act, 2005. What was achieved by a great struggle of people was almost defeated by this order.  The SC order in Girish Ramachandra Deshpande case was single most pocket pistol decision that shot dead millions of RTI applications and thousands of second appeals all over country.

The privacy of public servant is becoming a highly contentious issue since the advent of Right to Information Act, 2005, enabling citizen to seek information about public authorities and their officers.  An employee of the state is legally defined as public servant and every citizen will be a virtual employer in electoral democracy. Can privacy hamper the regime of transparency and scrutiny of public conduct of the public servant? If government employee’s privacy is limited, to what extent?  The conflict between right to privacy and need for transparency is the centre of controversy in many cases before the information Commissions and Constitutional courts, more so in Girish Ramachandra Deshpandey case, which travelled from second appeal in CIC to SLP before Supreme Court has set a controversial standard for ‘personal’ information causing serious damage to right to information.  The apex court’s order of dismissing SLP in Girish Ramachandra Deshpande case is being very frequently used as apex court’s judicial declaration of law to deny any information about the memos, complaints, disciplinary action or conduct of the public servant.

Asia Law House, Hyderabad published the edited thesis of Madabhushi Sridhar for LL.D. as a book titled “Privacy as Secrecy”, in 2018. 

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