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RTI should be considered supreme: Shailesh Gandhi (Mumbai, Maharashtra)

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Sajib Nandi

Right to Information (RTI) should be supreme over the Data Protection Act and citizens should be provided the information they seek without any secrecy. Shailesh Gandhi, former Central Information Commissioner, has proposed the RTI Act should have primacy as every citizen should have access to information.

 

Citizens can submit their inputs and concerns regarding RTI to the Expert Committee on the Data Protection Act at MyGov Innovation | White Paper of the Committee of Experts on Data Protection Framework for India before January 30, 2018. The Expert Committee has proposed India should have a Data Protection Act as it is important for citizens. But it has nowhere recognised or noted the fact that there is a certain overlap and conflict with the citizen’s Right to Information. RTI has been recognised by the Supreme Court to be a fundamental right of citizens under Article 19 (1) (a) of the constitution.

 

Gandhi stated if the Data Protection Act is implemented, it will be an unwarranted curtailment of the Right To Information. Gandhi mentioned, “The applicability and beneficial aspects of RTI are far higher and affect a large part of our populace. Relatively, the Data Protection Act is likely to serve only the needs of the elite therefore the RTI Act should have primacy. If there is data which is not required by government, and is an invasion on privacy, it should normally not be on government records.”

 

Read more at: Mumbai: RTI should be considered supreme, says former CIC Shailesh Gandhi | Free Press Journal

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