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Wife uses RTI to find husband’s income details following domestic dispute

People generally shy way from discussing their salary with people who are not close to them, or are their immediate family. However, if a person refuses to disclose his income to his wife, can she do something about it? According to the Central Information Commission (CIC), the answer is ‘yes’. In a recently viral case, a woman decided to file an RTI to find out her husband’s income.

Filing for divorce is a stressful process whose financial dimension can sometimes be troublesome as the assets are divided among the parties concerned. In this recent turbulent divorce case, the husband refused to divulge information about his income, forcing his wife to seek recourse through the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

According to a report by Financial Express, Sanju Gupta filed an RTI application seeking details of her husband’s gross and taxable income for two financial years. Such details are often required to decide on alimony, maintenance, etc.

However, the Central Public Information Officer (CPIO), Income Tax Department office of the Income Tax Officer, Bareilly, initially refused to provide her with the details, citing her husband’s refusal to share said details. Undeterred, Gupta filed two more appeals. She first sought help from the First Appellate Authority (FAA), which upheld the CPIO’s order.

Following this, Gupta filed a second appeal with the Central Information Commission (CIC).

The CIC looked into some of its own past orders and judgements of the Supreme Court and High Courts. After taking these into consideration, the CIC ruled in the wife’s favour and directed the CPIO to “inform the appellant about the generic details of the net taxable income/gross income of her husband held and available with the Public Authority.”

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