ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Information Commission has issued a directive to the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) governor to disclose a list of top 1,000 loan defaulters in response to an information request made by a citizen.

The governor has been directed to disclose the required information and submit it to the Commission within 10 days.

Failure to comply will result in proceedings against the responsible parties under Section 20(f) of the Right of Access to Information Act, 2017, the commission has warned.

The request for information has been made by a citizen, Azmat Khan, who sought the list under the Right of Access to Information Act, 2017. In response, the State Bank of Pakistan requested exemption from disclosing the information under Section 7(d) of the Act, which relates to the records of banking companies and financial institutions concerning their customers’ accounts.

The commission thoroughly examined the information request, the written reply from the SBP, and the relevant law.

The order clarified that Section 7(d) of the Right of Access to Information Act, 2017, which exempts certain records from disclosure, does not apply to the requested list of loan defaulters.

Published in Dawn, July 9th, 2024

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