CIC limits hearings to urgent matters only via audio, video conference

The Central Information Commission has asked concerned parties to not visit the transparency panel unless it is essential. Photo: Twitter

The Central Information Commission has limited hearings to urgent matters and only through video and audio conferences till March 31 in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and has advised staff to maintain “social distancing”.

In an order issued on Tuesday, the Commission asked concerned parties to not visit the transparency panel unless it is essential and said all submissions can be uploaded online.

“Hearing will be limited to urgent matters through video and audio conference… Personal appearance of parties or their representatives is dispensed with. All visitors, as well as the staff, shall be tested at the existing checkpoint at entry gate of reception. Gatherings shall be prohibited in the Central Information Commission,” the order stated.

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In addition, the Commission building will be sanitised on a daily basis and all surfaces and objects will be regularly wiped with disinfectant, it said.

Door handles and lift knobs will be sanitised at least four times in a day, it said.
“Any staff reporting symptoms of fever, cough, cold and respiratory distress should be granted sick leave and advised for medical care,” it said.

Staff operating at various places should be trained on hand hygiene and sanitation. “Maintain social distancing,” the order told the staff. Over 35,000 cases are pending at the Commission, the highest adjudicating body for RTI related matters.

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