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Out to Expose Corruption, Haryana Farmer Gets RTI Reply in 32,000 Pages, All in English

Anil Kiswan, a resident of Darba Kalan village, had filed an RTI application with the Deputy Commissioner (DC) regarding the procurement of mustard and wheat on June 25, 2018. He had also paid a hefty amount of Rs. 68,834 for the information.

Ramlal Kondal | News18

Updated:September 1, 2018, 11:59 AM IST
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Out to Expose Corruption, Haryana Farmer Gets RTI Reply in 32,000 Pages, All in English
The 11 registered parcels were all inked in English, a language alien to the Haryana farmer.
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Sirsa: A small farmer in Haryana's Sirsa was left stunned when he finally received an information he had applied for under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, but in a voluminous 32,000 pages.

Anil Kiswan, a resident of Darba Kalan village, had filed an RTI application with the Deputy Commissioner (DC) regarding the procurement of mustard and wheat on June 25, 2018. He had also paid a hefty amount of Rs. 68,834 for the information.

His plea was forwarded by the DC to the Haryana State Cooperative Supply and Marketing Federation Limited (HAFED), which furnished him the information in 32,017 pages in 11 registered parcels that collectively weighed 160 kilograms.

If that was not enough, the parcels were all inked in English, a language alien to the Haryana farmer.

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The RTI reply arrived in 32,000 pages that weighed 160 kgs.

“I am a small farmer and own around 3-4 acres of land. I had gone to sell mustard and wheat to a local market here where I found some irregularities in the procurement process. Subsequently, I filed an RTI to expose the scam,” Kiswan told News18.

The farmer added that he had sought information for around 11-12 questions, wherein he had asked if the mustard was being weighed as per norms and if farmers are being paid on time, etc.

“They responded entirely in English, despite my specific request for Hindi. Now, what will I do with them? I can’t even read a page in English,” said the distraught farmer.

Kiswan didn’t give up. He tried to decipher some of the pages that had some Hindi imprints and figured that HAFED had “equivocally furnished the details.”

He also claimed that he was pressurised by some government officials to refrain from filing an RTI. “One manager from HAFED came to meet me for settling the matter. He told me that he was retiring on September 30 and asked me to wait till then. But I did not budge,” he alleged.

Kiswan now plans on approaching the CM window for redressal. “I managed to pay Rs. 68,000 because I could afford it. Had it been some other guy then what? This scam is worth crores. I want the matter to be thoroughly probed,” said Kaswan.
| Edited by: Ahona Sengupta
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