RTI Reply Time: Time Limit to get Information under RTI

RTI Reply Time - Time Limit to get Information under RTIThere are various ways to file RTI Application, each having different time limit for reply. RTI Act 2005 provides for different RTI Reply Time in various cases. Let me explain RTI Reply Time in each case with examples.

RTI Reply Time: Time Limit to get Information under RTI Act, 2005 in various Cases

1. You submitted your RTI Application directly to PIO:

You can submit your RTI Application directly to PIO either personally or through Post Office.

i) You submitted your Application directly to PIO by Hand:

In this case, PIO shall reply to your RTI Application within 30 days from the date when you submitted your application to PIO. You may receive information at your address within 37 days (30 days + 2-7 days of postal delays).

Let me explain RTI Reply Time in this case with example:

Suppose, you submitted your RTI Application to PIO on 09-03-2016 by hand. In this case, PIO shall either provide information or reject request for information on or before 07-04-2014 (09-03-2016 + 30 days). You may receive Reply of PIO in 2-7 days after dispatch of reply by PIO depending on the distance of your Address from PIO and mode of dispatch (Registered/Speed Post); i.e. you may receive Reply of PIO by 14-04-2016.

 ii). You submitted your Application directly to PIO through Post Office:

In this case, PIO shall reply to your RTI Application within 30 days from the date when PIO received your application. You may receive information at your address within 44 days (2-7 days for you Application to reach PIO through post office + 30 days for PIO to reply + 2-7 days for Reply of PIO to reach you through Post Office).

Let me explain RTI Reply Time in this case with example:

Suppose, you dispatched your RTI Application through post office to PIO on 09-03-2016. PIO may receive your Application by 16-03-2016 due to postal delays of 2-7 days depending on the the distance of PIO’s Address from you and mode of dispatch (Registered/Speed Post). Suppose PIO received your Application on 15-03-2016. In this case, PIO shall either provide information or reject request for information on or before 13-04-2014 (15-03-2016 + 30 days). You may receive Reply of PIO in 2-7 days after dispatch of reply by PIO depending on the distance of your Address from PIO and mode of dispatch (Registered/Speed Post); i.e. you may receive Reply of PIO by 20-04-2016.

2. You submitted your RTI Application to PIO through APIO:

You can submit application to APIO either personally or through post office.

i) You submitted your Application to APIO by Hand:

In this case, PIO shall reply to your RTI Application within 35 days (30 days + 5 days, as per section 5(2) of the RTI Act) from the date when APIO received your application. You may receive information at your address within 42 days (30 days + 5 days, as per section 5(2) of the RTI Act + 2-7 days of postal delays).

Let me explain RTI Reply Time in this case with example:

Suppose, you submitted your RTI Application to APIO on 09-03-2016 by hand. In this case, PIO shall either provide information or reject request for information on or before 12-04-2014 (09-03-2016 + 30 days + 5 days, as per section 5(2) of the RTI Act). You may receive Reply of PIO in 2-7 days after dispatch of reply by PIO depending on the distance of your Address from PIO and mode of dispatch (Registered/Speed Post); i.e. you may receive Reply of PIO by 19-04-2016.

ii). You sent your Application to APIO through post office:

In this case, PIO shall reply to your RTI Application within 35 days (30 days + 5 days, as per section 5(2) of the RTI Act) from the date when APIO received your application. You may receive information at your address within 49 days (2-7 days for your Application to reach APIO through post office + 35 days for  PIO to reply + 2-7 days for Reply of PIO to reach you through Post Office).

Let me explain RTI Reply Time in this case with example:

Suppose, you dispatched your RTI Application through post office to APIO on 09-03-2016. APIO may receive your Application by 16-03-2016 due to postal delays of 2-7 days depending on the the distance of APIO’s Address from you and mode of dispatch (Registered/Speed Post). Suppose APIO received your Application on 15-03-2016. In this case, PIO shall either provide information or reject request for information on or before 18-04-2014 (15-03-2016 + 35 days). You may receive Reply of PIO in 2-7 days after dispatch of reply by PIO depending on the distance of your Address from PIO and mode of dispatch (Registered/Speed Post); i.e. you may receive Reply of PIO by 25-04-2016.

3. You submitted your RTI Application to PIO through other Public Authority:

This way of filing RTI Application should be used reluctantly, and only when you are unable to file RTI Application directly to PIO or through APIO of concerned Public Authority.

In this case, PIO of Public Authority to whom you submitted your RTI Application shall forward your Application under section 6(3) of the RTI Act to the PIO of that Public Authority to whom your information sought belong or is more closely related. After receiving your application, PIO of the concerned Public Authority to whom your Application was forwarded shall reply to your RTI Application within 30 days from the date when he received your application. You may receive information at your address within 56 days (2-7 days for your Application to reach PIO to whom you submitted your application through post office + 5 days for receiving PIO to forward your application to the PIO of the concerned Public Authority + 2-7 days for your Application to reach PIO of concerned Public Authority through post office + 30 days for concerned PIO to reply + 2-7 days for Reply of concerned PIO to reach you through Post Office).

Let me explain RTI Reply Time in this case with example:

Suppose, you dispatched your RTI Application through post office to PIO on 09-03-2016. PIO may receive your Application by 16-03-2016 due to postal delays of 2-7 days. PIO forwarded your application under section 6(3) to the concerned PIO on 20-03-2016. Concerned PIO may receive your Application by 27-03-2016 due to postal delays of 2-7 days. Concerned PIO replied on 25-04-2016. You may receive Reply of concerened PIO in 2-7 days after dispatch of reply by PIO depending on the distance of your Address from PIO and mode of dispatch (Registered/Speed Post); i.e. you may receive Reply of PIO by 02-05-2016. In this way, you may receive reply from PIO within 56 days.

By now, you have understood RTI Reply Time in normal cases. Let me explain RTI Reply Time in few special cases.

RTI Reply Time: Time Limit to get Information under RTI in special Cases

Special Case-1( Information pertaining to Life and Liberty of a person):

As per proviso to section 7(1) of the RTI Act, if information sought for concerns the life or liberty of a person, the PIO shall provide information within 48 hours of the receipt of the request, rather than within 30 days. Thus, in such situation replace 30 days with 48 hours in calculating time limit.

Special Case-2 (Additional Fees to be paid by Applicant):

Suppose you have asked through RTI copies of some documents, for which you need to pay additional fees to the PIO. In this case, under section 7(3) PIO shall intimate to the applicant the details of additional fees with break up to be paid for information, and under section 7(5) applicant shall pay additional fees to the PIO, provided fees asked by PIO is as per provision of RTI. The period intervening between the despatch of the said intimation by PIO and payment of fees by the applicant shall be excluded for the purpose of calculating the period of 30 days referred to in that section 7(1).

Let me explain RTI Reply Time in this case with example:

Suppose, PIO received your RTI Application on 09-03-2016, either personally or through post office. In this case, PIO shall either provide information or reject request for information on or before 07-04-2016 (09-03-2016 + 30 days). But after receiving application, PIO found that you need to pay additional fees of Rs. 50/- to provide information.

Suppose, PIO sends intimation to you under section 7(3) of the RTI Act to pay additional fees on 20-03-2016. You receive intimation on 25-03-2016. You pay additional fees to the PIO on 05-04-2016. PIO receives fees on 10-04-2016. In this case, the time duration between 20-03-2016 and 10-04-2016 shall be excuded for the purpose of calculating the period of 30 days referred to in that section 7(1). Thus, now PIO shall reply to your RTI Application on or before 28-04-2016, rather than on or before 07-04-2016 ((09-03-2016 to 19-03-2016 = 11 days) + (10-04-2016 to 28-04-2016 = 19 days) = 30 days).

Special Case-3 (Third Party Information):

Your information sought for belong to third party (defined under section 2(n)) and is considered confidential by third party. If PIO intends to disclose the third party information to the applicant, then PIO shall, within five days from the receipt of the request, give a written notice to such third party of the request and of the fact that the PIO intends to disclose the information or record, or part thereof, and invite the third party to make a submission in writing or orally, regarding whether the information should be disclosed.

If such notice has been issued by the PIO under section11(1) of the RTI Act, then PIO shall reply to the RTI Application within 40 days from receipt of application, rather than within 30 days.

By now, you may have understood RTI Reply Time in various cases. If you still have any doubt in RTI Reply Time, you may ask me through comment box.

If you didn’t receive information from the PIO within time limits specified and explained above, you may prefer First Appeal under section 19 (1) of the RTI Act within specified time period.

To know the time limits to submit First Appeal under section 19(1) or 19(2), you may visit Time Limits for filing First Appeal under RTI.

To know the step by step procedure to submit First Appeal under section 19(1) or 19(2), you may visit How to file First Appeal under RTI?

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14 comments

  • atul mandal

    sir, i filed a RTI on 8th feb 2017, against makaut, and received the receipt application on the same date.
    I have not received any reply from the pio yet.

  • Nikhil Niraj

    thanxx once again for replying Mr. Sanjeet Kumar… 🙂
    I really appreciate for all the answers you have provided during our discussions and thank you for clarifying all my doubts regarding the matter…
    I’ll surely get in touch with you if I have any problems regarding RTI in future…
    One last question, as I have already filed the RTI and as you said that my matter will be forwarded to the CPIO itself…
    So if I have filed the RTI on, suppose 16th January 2017 in the evening when will the matter forwarded to the CPIO in this instance…

  • Nikhil Niraj

    What if I E-mail to CPIO about my issue…
    What is the time limit for that…??

    • Hi Nikhil,
      You can not file RTI Application through e-mail. You must pay RTI Application fees along with application, which you can’t do through e-mail.
      Now, coming to the time limit, count of time limit starts from the date PIO receives your application along with fees.

      • Nikhil Niraj

        Thanxx for your reply…
        I did filed an RTI online an paid the amount Rs.10 for the same…
        In the status of the RTI, it gave me telephone no of the CPIO and PIO, on calling the PIO he said that you need to contact the CPIO for the details…
        So I got the email ID of CPIO and had mailed him with details on my issues…
        Now how much time should I wait for my reply…!!

        • Hi Nikhil,
          You should start counting time limit from the date CPIO received your application, not the date you filed the application. CPIO shall reply within 30 days of the receipt of your application. You may wait for additional 5 days, considering he may send reply through post office.

          • Nikhil Niraj

            Thanxx again for the reply…
            So I should wait for at least 35 days for my reply from the date I sent him the E-mail….
            and I don’t think he can post me the reply because I haven’t mentioned my address on the mail I sent to him…!!

          • Hi Nikhil,
            Yes. You must provide your address while filing RTI Application online.

          • Nikhil Niraj

            Thanxx again for your reply…
            So I have to wait for a maximum of 35 days to get a Reply, and if I don’t get a Reply after this time period what should be my next Step…
            btw, the CPIO can’t post me his Reply bcoz there is no Physical Address mentioned along with my Mail…
            and one more question, I have mailed to the CPIO without my RTI application or status attached to it… Is it ok….??
            or should I have provided him with the application or status or both as a proof that I have filed an RTI…

          • Hi Nikhil,
            If you have filed RTI Application online, then you don’t require to send any email to CPIO. While filing RTI Application online, you must have mentioned your address. The CPIO must have got your application and Address online. You don’t need to do anything now. You can contact CPIO if you need to know status.
            Secondly, if you don’t receive information within 35 days, you may file First Appeal under section 19(1) of the RTI Act.

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