New Delhi (ILNS): Husbands will no longer be able to keep their incomes a secret from their wives. If she so desires, the wife can file an RTI application and all the sources of income of her husband will be before her. This was decided by the Central Information Commission (CIC) earlier this month, against an RTI application for her husband’s ITRs by Rahmat Bano on November 28, 2018.
She had filed for copies of her husband’s ITRs for 2017-2018.
Originally, the Central Public Information Officer (CPIO) had refused to give the information to the woman. She did not give up, she filed an appeal and then a second appeal, this time before the CIC.
The CPIO counsel argued that the husband had refused this facility to his wife, saying that this was personal information and cannot be disclosed under Section 8(1)(j) of the RTI Act. There was the backing of a Supreme Court ruling – Girish Ramchandra Deshpande vs. Central Information Commission & ors – which had said that IT Returns fall in the personal information category.
What went in the woman’s favour, however, was a Madhya Pradesh High Court ruling, which said that a wife was entitled to know what remuneration her husband was getting. The CIC said that the Girish Ramchandra Deshpande ruling was not applicable.