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Atul Patankar

Huge response to DoPT On-line Course on RTI

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Atul Patankar

Press release from Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions on 07 Sept 2009



The Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), Online Certificate Course on RTI began today on a pilot project basis. The 15-day course started on a Pilot Project basis is being taken by various stakeholders on, both, the demand and supply sides of the RTI implementation regime. This Course on RTI is in association with the Centre for Good Governance, Hyderabad. The first batch has 60 candidates. The response to the course was overwhelming with 1452 applications. Those other than in the Pilot batch will be covered in subsequent batches.


The Online Certificate Course is aimed at:


>> Public Information Officers (PIOs)

>> Assistant Public Information Officers (APIOs)

>> Appellate Authorities

>> Officials assisting the above designated officers or other public officials

>> Citizens

>> Representative of Civil Society Organisations (including Media Organisations)

>> Any other person(s) who could be a direct/indirect stakeholder


The objectives of the Course are:


>> Reaching out to those who have not had an opportunity to participate in any training/sensitization initiatives on RTI Act, 2005

>> Bringing greater clarity on RTI among designated implementing officials like APIOs/ PIOs/ FAOs

>> Ensuring appreciation for RTI Act, 2005 and its mandate among the officials designated under it and also among the citizens

>> Facilitating timely delivery of information by PIOs

>> Having better informed citizens, civil society and other stakeholders


The outcomes expected from this initiative are:


>> A sound knowledge of the provisions of the RTI Act, 2005 among the people taking this course

>> Good understanding of the roles and responsibilities of organizations/ persons concerned with implementing the law and with enforcing the rights under this law

>> Proper appreciation of rights/obligations ¡V as applicable ¡V for effective use of RTI

>> Reliable guidance on following the right process/procedure to implement the provisions of this Act and to benefit from this Act.

>> Good understanding of remedies available when an implementing organization fails to comply with this Act.



Source: PIB Press Release

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Lucky fellas who could able to get into the first PILOT batch, the DoPT has the following fare. :)


About the Online Course

Online course consists of 4 Modules. Each module comprises 3 chapters. The entire Course is to be completed over a continued period of 15 days.



These 15 days are further divided into two slots. It is proposed that, the first 12 days be allocated to studying the modules and chapters and taking a quiz for each chapter. The last 3 days are to be used for taking the online examination.

  • Course Work: 12 days
  • Online Test and Certification: 3 days

The online course is flexible. Within these slots of 12 days and 3 days, a candidate can complete the course work (i.e,. study of modules) at her / his convenience - one or more than one module / chapter at a time. It is estimated that each chapter and its respective quiz can be completed in one hour.


The candidate has the option of studying the material in one day or in any number of days between Day 1 to Day 12.


The course content will be supplemented with additional reading and reference material for the better understanding of the candidates.


  1. Module: I - Introduction to Right to Information [Days 1 - 3]
    Day 1 - Chapter - 1 - Evolution of Freedom of / Right to Information
    Day 2 - Chapter - 2 - Genesis of the "Right to Information Act, 2005" in India
    Day 3 - Chapter - 3 - Preamble and key concepts of "RTI Act, 2005"
  2. Module: II - Implementation of the RTI Regime - Roles and Responsibilities of Key Actors [Days 4 - 6]
    Day 4 - Chapter - 4 - Appropriate Governments and Competent Authorities
    Day 5 - Chapter - 5 - Public Authorities, Public Information Officers, Assistant public Information Officer and First Appallate Authorities
    Day 6 - Chapter - 6 - Information Commissions
  3. Module: III - Process of Seeking Information [Days 7 - 9]
    Day 7 - Chapter - 7 - Application Process.
    Day 8 - Chapter - 8 - Appeal Process
    Day 9 - Chapter - 9 - Complaint Process
  4. Module: IV - Exemptions and Miscellaneous Provisions [Days 10 - 12]
    Day 10 - Chapter - 10 - Exempted Information
    Day 11 - Chapter - 11 - Exempted Organisations
    Day 12 - Chapter - 12 - Miscellaneous Provisions

Each chapter will be followed by a quiz. A candidate shall have to answer at least 2 out of 3 questions of the quiz correctly to be able to move to the next chapter


For every module, on the whole, the qualifying percentage-of-marks-to-be-scored would be a little higher. Thus, out of a total of 9 questions for a module, a candidate will have to answer at least 7 correctly to be able to proceed to the next module.


In case the candidate is not able to achieve the desired level of competency he / she will have to repeat the module. The quiz will then throw up a different set of questions to ensure that the participant has fully grasped the subject.


The participant has the option of printing the contents if he / she so desires. He / she, however, would not be able to print the quiz questions (at the end of each chapter) or the questions asked during the examination (at the end of the course).


The course material will be supported by a discussion forum. Candidates are encouraged to raise queries, air their views, and share experiences as they go along. All candidates can post their queries / views/ experiences. There will be a moderator for the discussion forum to facilitate.


After the 12th day (i.e. for days 13, 14 & 15) the course material and the discussion forum will be closed. These days are set aside for a candidate to write an "Online Examination". On the successful completion of which, he / she would be issued a "Certificate of Completion".


The online examination can be written on any of the days between the 13th to the 15th day of the course. The examination is of descriptive type: 6 analytical questions are required to be answered (each in not more than 150 words).


Candidates can take the examination in one sitting or in multiple sittings. Before submission of answers-to-the-examination, a brief feedback form would need to be filled by the candidates.


Based upon, the performance, a candidate would be placed in Grade A / Grade B / Grade C. The grading will be done on the following basis.


Grade A: 80% & above

Grade B: 60% - 79%

Grade C: 59% - 69%


A certificate would be generated for a candidate only on securing the minimum prescribed qualifying marks in the examination.


Candidates who fail to secure the minimum qualifying marks will not have the option to repeat the Online Examination again in the same batch. Should they wish to take the examination with any of the subsequent batches, they would need to convey it to the Administrator. Candidates can write the Online Examination later in exceptional circumstances, provided they communicate to us their inability to do so before the 12th day.


The Administrator would, in consultation with DoPT, take a view on the same, provided vacant slots are available in the subsequent batches.

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Did any member from the forum get admission ?

I got a regret.

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I have not got any response. The portal says that those who registered but were not selected for first batch will be selected for subsequent batches.

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I think Bimal Khemani did able to get into it as per his post in some other forum.


Best wishes to him. :cool:


I would like to learn about his experience & feedback on this course.

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