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RTI is being butchered at the doorstep of Information Commissions.

Prasad GLN

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RTI is being butchered at the doorstep of Information Commissions. And How!

Vinita Deshmukh
14 March 2018 0  

The report that has just been released by two NGOs – Satarka Nagrik Sangathan (SNS) and Centre for Equity Studies (CES) hits the nail on how the Central Information Commissions (CICs) and State Information Commissions (SICs) are mercilessly killing the Right to Information Act (RTI), in more ways than one.


The study revolved around the performance of information commissions (ICs) in terms of the number of appeals and complaints registered and disposed of by the ICs; the number of pending appeals and complaints and imposition of penalty; the estimated waiting time for the disposal of an appeal; availability of annual reports of ICs; frequency of violations penalised by ICs and transparency in the functioning of ICs. {subscription_div} All these areas are in a dismal state.


The report is based on 169 RTI applications at 29 SICs and the CIC. 

 More details link  https://www.moneylife.in/article/rti-is-being-butchered-at-the-doorstep-of-information-commissions-and-how/53385.html


An eye opener who still thinks that going for second appeal gets  penalties

In the end applicant has no say for imposing penalties as Delhi HC ruled that levying penalty is at the discretion of IC and in between PIO and IC.

So at the end, if such is the case, why Act says penalty is not known.

Also study the recovery of even that 4% cases in which penalty was levied.   It is hardly sufficient to pay the salaries of one IC.

Now think, if the penalties are levied as per stipulations as to whether the second appeals will come down or not,

and whether indiscriminate penalties at one time can make Information commission self sufficient ?

and whether stipulation by DOPT for first appeal hearing and for delivering a speaking order further reduces second appeals or not.

Who is bothered ?  Even such butchered parts of animals can serve to  feed to some.

Imagine as to appellant has to wait for ten years for second appeal at CIC.

It is just like running with the hare and hunting with the hound.


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Yes, it is a fact that the spirit of powerful  act takes last breath at the door step of Information Commissioners.In the last 12 years, the Strong Act become blunt because of the Commissioners soft paddling, i.e. not awarding any penalties  as per Section 20 of the Act.  

The CIC New Delhi in order No.CIC/SG/A/2010/10280-Penalty,  ordered a penalty of Rs. 25,000/-on defaulting PIOs.  

  Punjab & Haryana High Court, Chandgarh  in order in CWP No. 17758 of 2014 ruled that in case of No Information, fine must, not warning. But based on Himachal Pradesh H C citation, the case was remanded to the SIC to decide strictly in terms of Section 20 of the Act. .  

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