Right to Information act was passed to provide for setting out the practical regime of right to information for citizens. The main aim of the Act is to provide a secure access to information for promoting transparency and accountability.
As per the preamble, the RTI Act helps in:
•Securing the access to information under the control of public authorities.
•Promoting transparency and accountability in the workplace.
•Consulting a Central Information Commission and State Information Commissions.
The salient features of the RTI act are as follows:
•A citizen has the right to seek information from any public authority.
• This right includes the inspection of documents, records, notes and other certified samples held by the public authority.
• Public information authorities and assistant public information officers are enacted within 100 days of the enactment.
•The act makes it obligatory for every public authority to make suo – moto disclosure in respect of the particulars of its organisation, functions, duties, etc. as provided in section 4 of the act.
•To seek information, an application is to be made to the state public information officier who deals with requests of information.
•The application should be accompanied by demand draft or banker cheque or Indian Postal Order of Rs.10 payable to the Accounts Officer of public authority.
•There is no fee for making an appeal.
•It is not compulsory to provide reasons for seeking the information.
•To encourage the accountability and transparency in the performance of public duty by the public bodies.
•To set up a system wherein the citizens have a right to access the information under the control of public authorities.
•To allow the government bodies (public authorities) to take decisions as per the prescribed laws and contain corruption.
•To bring forward the irregularity of the public authorities into the public domain.
A Public Authority is any authority, body or institution of self government. These bodies or institutions are constituted or under the constitution or by another law made by the parliament or the state legislature. The state government or the central government may by issuing the notification declare anybody or institution as the public authority. The bodies or substantially financed by the central or stage government authorities are also recognized as public authorities. The non – financial bodies that are substantially financed by either the state government or the central government also come under the definition of the public authority.
Public Information Officers and their duties:
•Public Information officers shall deal with the applications or request of information of the citizens demanding the information cannot be provided, an explanation should be provided for the same.
•If the information demanded for is related to the pother public authority office, the public information officers shall transfer the same within 5 days of the request to that concerned officers and shall inform the applicant accordingly.
•The public information officer can seek the information from any other officer as he deems fit for discharge of its duties.
•The public information officer within 30 days of the receipt of the request shall provide the desired information to the applicant.
•If the information desired is for liberty or life of a person, it shall be provided within 48 hours of the receipt of the information.
•If the public information officer fails to provide the information within the specified time, it is deemed that he had refused to supply the information.
•If the information desired cannot be provided in full, the public information officer shall inform the applicant stating the reasons for providing the partial information.
•If the information to be supplied is treated to be confidential by the third party, the public information officer shall take it into consideration within 5 days from the receipt of request.
•public information officer can issue a notice to the third party to present itself within 10 days of the receipt of notice.
Procedure for requests for obtaining information:
1. Application: The request for getting the information is required to be submitted in writing or using the electronic means in English, Hindi or the official language of the area. The request should be clearly stating the reason for obtaining such information.
2. Time Limit: the time limit of supplying the information is 30 days, if the information is regarding the life and liberty of a person, it shall be provided within 48 hours.
3. Fee: The application fee paid should be reasonable and prescribed through a notification from time to time. People living below poverty line should not be charged.
4. Grounds for rejection: If the information is covered under the exemption from disclosure or information infringes the copyright of any person other than the state.
I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.
If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.
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We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.
We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge