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Right to Information RTI

RTI- Right to Information

  • Right to Information RTI is another empowering Act for the citizens.
  • It gives access to the information about public offices to the common man and hence can make every citizen, a potential whistle-blower.
  • This landmark legislation attempts to bring the following changes in the government-citizen relationship:
  1. From a culture of secrecy to a culture of transparency.
  2. From personalized despotism towards accountable government.
  3. From unilateral decision making towards participation in governance.

Salient features of RTI -Right to Information Act, 2005

  1. Every public authority has to provide to the citizen the right to information within a prescribed time limit. Public Authorities has been ascertained by the Act itself, which includes the office of the President, Vice-President, Prime Minister, Chief Justice of India, the Parliament, State Legislatures, the Supreme Court, High Courts, constitutional bodies such as CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General), Election Commission etc. It also includes all the departments, Ministries, Boards, PSUs (Public Sector Undertakings), Agencies of Central Government, State Governments & Local Governments.
  2. It is mandatory for a public authority to create a separate office called as PIO (Public Information Officer), with an objective to provide information within a prescribed time limit of 30 days. If the information is related to life and personal liberty than the information should be provided within 48 hours.
  3. If any citizen is not satisfied with the content, context or subject matter of any information or the information is not provided within a prescribed time limit of 30 days than an appeal can be filled before 1st level Appellate Authority (i.e. the Joint Secretary of the respective department) and against the adjudication of 1st level Appellate Authority the appeal can be filed before the 2nd Appellate Authority (i.e. CIC- Central Information Committee & SIC- State Information Committee).
  4. This Act also prescribes/describes the term Information in a comprehensive manner. Information means any material in any form including records, documents, e-mails, opinions, advices, orders, law books, contracts, samples etc.
  5. RTI Right to Information Act also determines some exceptions under which the public authorities have no obligation to give any official information to any citizen. These exceptions are as follows:-
  1. Information relating to integrity, security, sovereignty and strategic, economic & scientific interest if the State.
  2. Information which has been expressly restricted by any court of law to be published.
  3. If disclosure will cause a breach of privilege of Parliament or State Legislature.
  4. Information including IPR (Intellectual Property Rights) & trade secrets.
  5. Information received in confidence from any foreign government.
  6. Information the disclosure of which would endanger the life or physical safety of any person.
  7. Information related to the process of investigation and prosecution.
  8. Cabinet papers including records of deliberation of Council of Ministers and other high level officials.
  9. Personal information, disclosure of which has no relationship with nay public activity or interest.

chiseled and crafted by G.Rajput sir