Right to Information Applications under RTI Act, 2005 in respect of a request made to foreign tax authorities under tax treaties – Reg
Government of India
Ministry of Finance
Foreign Tax & Tax Research Division
Exchange of Information Cell, India.
Dated 30th October, 2017
All the Pr. CCsIT/DGsIT(Inv.)/CCsIT(Central)
Sub: Right to Information Applications under the RTI Act, 2005 in respect of a request made to foreign tax authorities under tax treaties – Reg.
It is noticed that RTI applications, where information is sought in respect of a request for information made to any foreign jurisdiction under tax treaties, are being transferred to the FT&TR division in a routine manner by CPIOs and First Appellate Authorities functioning in the field. It is to state that this division only facilitates the exchange of information and once the information in a particular case is received from any foreign jurisdiction, the same is forwarded to the concerned field authorities in original. Thereafter, the field authorities who had requested for such information become the custodian of that information. Any RTI application concerned with such information should, therefore, be dealt with by the concerned field authorities who hold such information.
2. In this regard, it may also be stated that the use and disclosure of the information received under the tax treaties is governed by the confidentiality provisions of the respective tax treaties and therefore, disclosure of information received under tax treaties is covered under section 8(1)(a) and 8(l)(f) of the Right to Information Act, 2005.
3. It is, therefore, requested that necessary instructions may be issued to the Central Public Information Officers as well as the First Appellate Authorities functioning in your charge to pass appropriate orders under the RTI Act, 2005 in such cases where information is sought in respect of a request for information made to any foreign jurisdiction. Inputs, if required, may be sought from the FT&TR division under the relevant provisions of the RTI Act, 2005.
5. This issues with the approval of the Chairman, CBDT.
Under Secretary [FT&TR-III (2)]
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