13 Oct 17:14 2013
[HumJanenge] Re: CHRI's report on the status of RTI in India based on a study of Annual Reports of Information Commissions
Sarbajit Roy <sroy.mb@...>
2013-10-13 15:14:19 GMT
2013-10-13 15:14:19 GMT
Dear Gen JatarThe fundamental mistake RTI activists make is to treat the obtaining of the information as their primary objective. It seems that all the RTI activist can do is make a great pretence of obtaining information (all the while circulating his failures in cry-baby email groups where RTI activist mutually console each other) and then think that the job is over by putting whatever they get into public domain / media.
Actually, if information is not given by the PIO the matter ends there. The trick is to draft the RTI request properly and ensure that a) PIO does NOT give the requested information or b) evades givig information in the manner you want him to.
On Sun, Oct 13, 2013 at 6:23 PM, Sudhir Jatar <scnjat-Re5JQEeQqe8AvxtiuMwx3w@public.gmane.org> wrote:
Dear Venkatesh saheb,I have not yet studied the report in detail but thought I would give you my response to the report in ToI of today in the Pune Edition.It says that less than 10 % RTI queries recorded face rejection. This statement gives a wrong impression that the public information officers have supplied 90 % information information and hence the Act has met with its objectives.My own experience with applications sent by me and by a number of citizens who come to us for advice is that the information that is denied is generally the critical one. Giving you an example, I asked for 'consent' under the Air and Water Acts for municipal solid waste processing plants both from the municipal corporation and from the pollution control board. Both gave me 'authorisation' under the MSW (Handling & Management) Rules, 2000 and not 'consent'.This critical information is essential because the plants are creating havoc in polluting the ground water and the ambient air. This is adversely affecting the health of the citizens. Apparently, for what ever reasons, contracts have been awarded without due authority and contrary to the law of the land.Of course, we go in for an appeal. The Appellate Authority directs that the information be given. It is again denied. Hence, we put in a second appeal. Currently, the information commissioner is hearing second appeals of May 2011 vintage. Even after the hearing, it takes almost six months to issue orders. The PIO is generally not fined and if fined, the amount is rarely deducted from the person's salary. Again, we are no so much interested in the penalty. We want information, which may still be far away.Hence, do we wait for more than 3 years to get a decision in such critical and straight forward matters? In spite of orders for preference to senior citizens, it is generally not accorded.Hence, if I have received 90 % of the information but denied the 10 %, what do we say is the status of the implementation of the RTI Act?I have given you only one example. But now-a-days, this is an increasing tendency on the part of the PIOs.We need to study the quality and not quantity, we need to study the time frame within which information is given, the time frame within which appeals are heard and lastly whether the orders of the information commissions are implemented or only lip service paid.The tendency to compare the speed of disposal with courts of law or tribunals is erroneous because in the case of RTI, highly complicated legal issues are rarely to be decided upon.Maj. Gen. S. C. N. Jatar, Retd--On 12 October 2013 08:01, Venkatesh Nayak <venkatesh-VldVBIePPc7rfyPWP6PaXg+gnn+XHhfY2LY78lusg7I@public.gmane.org> wrote:Dear all,
I am happy to send you our latest study report on the status of RTI use in
India based on data mined from the Annual Reports of Information
Please circulate this email amongst your networks.
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