If a Public Authority like SEBI receives any document/information during the course of its statutory duties, can they be considered to be received in “fiduciary relationship” and can it be treated to be the information exempted under Section 8(1)(e) of the Right to Information Act 2005, which entitles the Public Authority to deny from providing such information, if requested by any applicant under the provisions of RTI Act 2005 ?
Right to information Act 2005
The appellate authority while deciding the above case has referred to the principal laid down by the High court of Delhi in deciding the fiduciary relationship, which is as follows:
“In a fiduciary relationship, the principal emphasis is on trust, and reliance, the fiduciary’s superior power and corresponding dependence of the beneficiary on the fiduciary. It requires a dominant position, integrity and responsibility of the fiduciary to act in good faith and for the benefit of and to protect the beneficiary and not oneself.”
Based on the above mentioned principle the Appellate Authority has decided that the information provided in the instant case can be treated as information received in the fiduciary relationship and henceforth exempted under Section 8(1)(e) of the RTI Act 2005.
The decision has been given based on the merits of the case, henceforth it should be noted that every information received by Public Authority during the course of its statutory duties cannot be treated to be exempted as aforementioned.