The Cental Information Commission (CIC) has administered the National Archives of India to issue the statement of Nathuram Godse, the man who was executed for assassinating ‘Father of The Nation’ Mahatma Gandhi, on its website.
Information Commissioner Sridhar Acharyulu said:
“One may disagree with Nathuram Godse and his co-accused but we cannot refuse disclosure or circulation of his opinion. At the same time, neither Nathuram Godse nor the holder of his theme or opinion can go to the extent of killing a person whose philosophy he cannot agree with.”
Petitioner Ashutosh Bansal had demanded the charge sheet and Godse’s statement, among other details, from, Delhi Police which redirected the application to the National Archives of India (NAI), saying that the reports have been handled over to it.
Acharyulu governed the Central Public Information Commissioner (CPIO-NAI) not to charge Rs three per page for photocopying because the Right to Information Act disallows any such provision of the Public Records Act by the integrity of Section 22 of the RTI Act.
He said since the information is more than 20 years old, it cannot be stopped except if it entices Section 8(1)(a) of the RTI Act, which hinders disclosure of information that unfavorably affects the security of the state.
Also, even section 8(1)(a) does not apply to the argument because the disclosure of Godse’s statement could lead to hostility between Hindu and Muslim communities.
He further added: “The Commission also directs the NAI to place the index of records available now with it about the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi on its official website along with the procedure to gain access, and recommends development of an archive to include present digitised records and collect as many as possible from various sources to be part of their disclosures under Section 4(1)(b).”