Right to Information – Master key to good governance


Posted by rtiact2005 on June 28, 2006



This is the age of information and also the age of transparency in public administration. It is, therefore, not surprising the secular, sovereign and democratic India has enacted to itself a law called Right to Information Act (RIA). Ever since the Act came into force, discussions and seminars on RIA are being held by different organisations all over the country. One such seminar was organised by the Lucknow Working Journalists’ Association.
The Act primarily came into being because of the repeated Supreme Court directives to the Union Government for enabling a common citizen to know how the elected government functioned. That means there must be transparency in the administration which would enable a common man to fight administrative injustice better.
While this was the opinion of Justice Pradeep Kant of Allahabad High Court, the UP Advocate General Kazmi thought otherwise. Drawing attention to the abuse of Public Interest Litigation (PIL), he cautioned against abuse of this newly-conferred right to information on the common man.
I think the best suggestion in the seminar came from the President of Indian Federation of Working Journalist K. Vikram Rao. He wanted a special Bench in High Courts and in the Supreme Court to expedite appeals against the Government under this Act. The reason for his suggestion was the apprehension that an unfriendly administration (which administration is friendly anyway ?) may throw a seeker of information into long litigation and this will defeat the purpose of the Act.
Very true, very true. I agree, I agree.


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