Right to Information Bill

Topics: Human rights, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Democracy Pages: 8 (2683 words) Published: May 6, 2013

The Right to Information Bill was passed by the Parliament on 13th May 2005. The Bill got the Presidential assent on 15th June 2005 to become the Right to Information Act, 2005. It is an Act to provide for freedom to every citizen to secure access to information under the control of public authorities, consistent with public interest, in order to promote openness, transparency and accountability in administration and in relation to matters connected there with. To bring about transparency and accountability and to implement the provisions of the Right to Information Act, 2005, INDO DANISH TOOL ROOM (IDTR) has made an attempt to provide certain information to citizens to empower them to exercise there right to Information. IDTR has designated Central Public Information Officer (CPIO) for dissemination of information. Appellate Officer has also been designated to provide facility to the public to appeal in case of non receipt of information sought for.

In case Information is not available as provided hereunder the said information can be sought under the Right to Information Act, 2005 by applying in the prescribed format. The format along with prescribed fees may be deposited which shall be forwarded to the CPIO and a date for receiving the information would be given to the applicant.  In case the Information can not be made available the cause for not making available such information would be given to the applicant in the prescribed period. If not satisfied to the reply, the applicant can seek redressal of his grievance from the Appellate Authority designated for the purpose.

Brief History
The National Campaign for People’s Right to Information (NCPRI) was founded in 1996. Its founding members included social activists, journalists, lawyers, professionals, retired civil servants and academics. One of its primary objectives was to campaign for a national law facilitating the exercise of the fundamental right to information. As a first step, the NCPRI and the Press Council of India formulated an initial draft of a Right to Information (RTI) law. This draft, after extensive discussions, was sent to the Government of India in 1996.  The Government finally introduced the Freedom of Information Bill in Parliament, in 2002. This was a very watered down version of the Bill first drafted by the NCPRI and others in 1996. Meanwhile, the NCPRI was also campaigning for state RTI acts and supporting the efforts of state governments, like Karnataka, Delhi and Rajasthan. In August 2004 the NCPRI forwarded to the National Advisory Council a set of suggested amendments to the Freedom of Information Act 2002. These amendments, designed to strengthen and make more effective the 2002 Act, were based on extensive discussions with civil society groups working on transparency and other related issues and were in response to the undertaking given by the UPA government, in their Common Minimum Programme, that the “Right to Information Act will be made more progressive, participatory and meaningful.” The NAC endorsed most of the suggested amendments and recommended them to the Prime Minister of India for further action. These formed the basis of the subsequent Right to Information Bill, introduced in Parliament on 22 December 2004. However, this bill, as introduced in Parliament, had many weaknesses. Most significantly, unlike the NCPRI suggestion, it did not apply to the whole country but only to the Union Government. The consequent outrage from civil society groups, including the NCPRI, forced the government to review the changes. The Bill was referred to a Standing Committee of the Parliament and to a Group of Ministers. The standing committee asked several of the NCPRI members to give evidence before it, and ultimately endorsed the stand taken by the NCPRI in most matters. . In the next session of Parliament, the bill was passed after over a hundred amendments introduced by the government to accommodate the recommendations...
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