New Delhi: The Delhi Sikh Gurudwara Management Committee (DSGMC) is a "public authority" and comes under the purview of the Right to Information Act, the Delhi High Court has held.

A division bench of Acting Chief Justice A K Sikri and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw also dismissed the DSGMC's appeal against the single judge order which had held it as "public authority".

"Once we read the definition of 'public authority' in Section 2(h) of the RTI Act, obvious conclusion would be that the appellant(DSGMC) is a 'public authority' as it is constituted by the Act of the Parliament. Undeniably, the appellant is a statutory body under the Delhi Sikh Gurudwaras Act. It is constituted under Section 3 of the DSG Act," the bench said.

The bench rejected the Committee counsel K T S Tulsi's argument that though the DSGMC may have been established by a law made by the Parliament but it is not a public authority as it did not receive funds directly or indirectly from government.

"We, thus, hold that once it is found that an authority or body or institution of self government is established or constituted in any manner prescribed in the RTI Act, then there is no further requirement of such a body to be either owned or controlled or substantially financed by an appropriate government," the bench further said.

On July 22, 2007, the single judge bench of the High Court had held that the Sikh body was a 'public authority' and falls under the ambit of RTI Act.


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