The Right to Information Act (RTI) is an Act of the parliament of India. It is the implementation of freedom of information in India on a national level "to provide for setting out the practical regime of right to information for citizens." The Act applies to all States and Union Territories of India, except the State of Jammu and Kashmir - which is covered under a State-level law. <br />
Certain facts<br /><ul><li>53% of public authorities do not share any information at all.
37% departments published about subsidies and beneficiaries.
Only 23% listed the projects they undertake.</li></li></ul><li>Need For RTI Act?<br /><ul><li> Promote Transparency of Information
Preservation of confidentiality of sensitive Information. </li></li></ul><li>RTI ACT--- Important sections <br />Section 2(j) a right to <br />inspection of work, documents, records, <br />(ii) taking notes, extracts or certified copies of documents or records,<br />(iii) taking separate samples of material, <br />(iv) obtaining information in the form of Disk, floppies, video cassettes.<br />Section 4 duty of public authorities to maintain records for easy access and to publish within 120 days the name of the officers who should give information.<br />Section 6(2) talks that an applicant cannot be questioned why he is asking for information.<br />
<ul><li>Sec. 7 request to be disposed of within 30 days provided that where information sought for concerns the life or liberty of a person, the same shall be provided within 48 hours.
A request rejected shall be communicated undersec. 7(8) giving reasons and specifying the procedure for appeal and the designation of the appellate authority.
Sec. 8 exempts from disclosure certain information and contents.</li></li></ul><li><ul><li>Sec. 20provides penalties for non-furnishing information as required by the Act in a sum of Rs.250/- per day.
Sec. 23bars all courts from entertaining any suit, application or other proceeding in respect of any order made under the Act and every order under the Act should be first appealed against. </li></li></ul><li>SALIENT FEATURES<br /><ul><li> Public authorities to designate Public Information Authorities and Assistant Public Information Officers within 100 days of the enactment.
Application for seeking information is to be made to an officer of the Public Authority who is State Public Information Officer. He is responsible to deal with requests of information/assist persons seeking information. </li></li></ul><li><ul><li> Provision of Complaint if the Public Information Officer fails to satisfy or it is a case of refusal access to any information requested under the Act or it is a case of over charging etc. The complaint can be made to the State Information Commission.
The Commission decides the appeals and conveys its decision to the Appellant/ Complainant and First Appellant Authority. </li></li></ul><li><ul><li> The Act makes it obligatory for every Public Authority to make suo-motu disclosure in respect of the particulars of its Organization, functions, duties etc. as provided in section 4 of the Act.
Transfer of a request by a Public authority to another public authority wherein the subject matter/information is held by the latter.
A Citizen should make an Application to the State Public Information Officer in writing in English or Hindi or in the official language of the area in which application is made.
The Application is to accompany a Demand Draft/Banker Cheque/Indian Postal Order of Rs. 10 payable to the Accounts Officer of public authority as fee prescribed. </li></li></ul><li><ul><li> No prescribed form of application for seeking information. It can be made on plain paper with Name and complete postal address of the applicant.
The information seeker is not required to give reasons for seeking information.
If an application is not supplied information within the prescribed time or not satisfied with the information provided, he may prefer an appeal to the first Appellate Authority who is an officer senior in rank to the Public Information Officer.
No fees for making an Appeal</li></li></ul><li><ul><li> If Appellant Authority fails to pass an order on the appeal with in the prescribed period, if the appellant is not satisfied with the order of the First Appeal Authority, he may prefer a Second Appeal with the State Information Commission within 90 days from the date on which the decision should have been made by the First Appellant Authority or was actually received by the Appellant.
Provision of Complaint if the Public Information Officer fails to satisfy or it is a case of refusal access to any information requested under the Act or it is a case of over charging etc. The complaint can be made to the State Information Commission.
The Commission decides the appeals and conveys its decision to the Appellant/ Complainant and First Appellant Authority. </li></li></ul><li>Restrictions Imposed by the Act <br />“Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, there shall be no obligation to give any citizen, –<br /> information, disclosure of which would prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security, strategic, scientific or economic interests of the State, relation with foreign State or lead to incitement of an offence;<br /> information which has been expressly forbidden to be published by any court of law or tribunal or the disclosure of which may constitute contempt of court ;<br /> information disclosure of which would cause a breach of privilege of Parliament or the State Legislature ;<br /> information including commercial confidence, trade secrets or intellectual property, the disclosure of which would harm the competitive position of a third party, unless the competent authority is satisfied that larger public interest warrants the disclosure of such information ; <br /> information received in confidence from foreign Government ;<br /> information, disclosure of which would endanger the life or physical safety of any person or identify the source of information or assistance given in confidence for law enforcement or security purposes ;<br /> information which would impede the process of investigation or apprehension or prosecution of offenders ;<br />
The intelligence and security organizations established by the Central Government not<br />under the perview of the Act <br />1. Intelligence Bureau<br />2. Research and Analysis wing of the Cabinet Secretariat<br />3. Directorate of Revenue Intelligence <br />4. Central Economic Intelligence Bureau<br />5. Directorate of Enforcement<br />6. Narcotics Control Bureau<br />7. Aviation Research Centre<br />8. Special Frontier Force<br />9. Border Security Force<br />10. Central Reserve Police Force<br />11. Indo-Tibetan Border Police<br />12. Central Industrial Security Force<br />13. National Security Guards<br />14. Assam Rifles<br />15. SasastraSeema Bal<br />16. CID Special Branch, Andaman and Nicober<br />17. The Crime Branch – CID – CB, Dadra and Nagar Haveli<br />18. Special Branch, Lakshadweep Police<br />19. Special Protection Group <br />20. Defence Research and Development Organisation<br />21. Border Road Development Board<br />22. Financial Intelligence Unit, India<br />
RTI-- Success Stories<br /><ul><li> Neglected Evaluation Deprives Career