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Thread: Train officials to make RTI effective: Habibullah

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    Train officials to make RTI effective: Habibullah


    Agra, Aug 18 (IANS) There was an urgent need to train government officials to ensure that the Right to Information (RTI) Act was used effectively for the benefit of people, Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) Wajahat Habibullah said here Saturday.

    "In Uttar Pradesh we get lots of complaints (from applicants) but fewer appeals. The complaints usually relate to government officials either denying information under one pretext or the other or not responding to their applications," he told mediapersons after a public interaction at the Divisional Commissioner's office.

    Representatives of various organisations and chambers of commerce and industry who met the CIC complained of the unhelpful attitude of the government officials who, they said, preferred to avoid giving out required information.

    Habibullah said a meeting of state information officers was convened in New Delhi to discuss how the RTI Act can be more effectively implemented and how various problems relating to its usage can be resolved.

    Khabrein.info
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    Re: Train officials to make RTI effective: Habibullah


    Indian cityzens are now fed up with such hoaxes. There is nothing wrong with the wonderful RTI Act 2005. Government have done their duties of formulating the Information Commissions. If the Information Commission does not understand the explicit provisions of the Act and fail to do their duties as stipulated in the Act, why do they cry that the Cityzen/officials need training ? if the Commission understood the Act why don't they impose penalty in every case where the PIOs denied the information ? They do not need any trining to give the information asked for. Most of the departments hardly possess any ionformation falling under the exemptions. What the PIOs are interested is that they want to find out provisions in the act that can enable them to refuse the informations. I had come across many such PIOs who want some more provisions to deny the information. They call it their lack of training.It is high time that the cityzens of India compel the Commissions to perform their duties entrusted to them in the Act and stop raising the hoaxes like lack of training
    Last edited by colnrkurup; 19-08-07 at 06:50 AM.

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    Re: Train officials to make RTI effective: Habibullah


    If the erring PIO`s and APPELLATE AUTHORITIES are fined and disciplinary actions are taken it is more than training them. That will teach them a lesson to realise the seriousness and value of RTI. That is the only way to keep RTI alive.
    Last edited by drmvalluvan; 10-11-07 at 09:49 PM. Reason: spelling mistakes

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    Re: Train officials to make RTI effective: Habibullah



    I agree with colnrkurup Sir. When some officer is designated as PIO/APIO or the AA, it is his duty to aquint with the provisions of the Act. There is no difficulty in understanding the plain language that the PIO is under obligation to provide information within 30 days and the first appeal has to be decided within 30 days. After all, all the officers are literate and can understand the easy language of the Act. In fact, the officers are reluctant to provide the information. When they can find out the excuses for not providing the information, it is clear that they know that the information is to be provided. I am afraid, if training is imparted to the PIOs etc., then the course contents will definitely include as to how to avoid disseminating of information instead of how to provide information.

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    Re: Train officials to make RTI effective: Habibullah


    I believe most of the information is denied because the office is simply not geared to face the consequence of giving the information.
    I support the view of providing training if it is able to senstise the whole office about the urgency and importance.

    It is only the sections who are handling RTI application are serous about the application, generally. The rest of the sections are simply sitting duck and by the time they realize they had already lost the valuable time to reddress the grievance.

    And after that its all the way down hill to defend and deny causing insult to the injury.

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    Re: Train officials to make RTI effective: Habibullah


    Sri.V V Giry, Information Commissioner, Kerala, during his power point presentation at the CIC's conferance on 17-10-2007 has brought out that "Resistance of PAs to provide information related illegal actions" is one of the problems faced by State Information Commission. Belive it or not, I had observed that even the SIC, Kerala does not consider the second appeals/complaints in its turn of receipt when the information sought is likely to expose corruption or illegal activities. Even when such cases turn towards exposure of corruption or illegal activities, theSIC is found diverting the attention to the merrit of the case instead of confining to the request for information. I do not consider lack of training has any role to play in such cases. I agree that it is only the sections handling RTI applications is serious about it. It is because only the PIOs in person are made responsible with liability of penalty. The RTI Act gets at least this much attention from the PIOs, only becuase of this provision. Had the CIC/SICs abide by the provisions of the Act strictly as laid down in impossing penalty and had the RTI Act made the AAs also liable for penalty matters would have been different.
    Last edited by colnrkurup; 11-11-07 at 10:34 AM.

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    Re: Train officials to make RTI effective: Habibullah


    The PIO may seek the assistance of any other officer as he considers necessary for the proper discharge of duties and the officer, whoes assistance has been sought, is under obligation to render all assistance and for the purposes of any contravention of the provisions of the Act, such other officer shall be treated as a PIO {S.5(3) & (4)} Therefore, the PIO is not able to provide the information within the stipulated time due to the fault of any other officer, he can disclose his name in the proceedings before the commission and hence the penalty can be imposed to such other officer also. Therefore, I do not think that the other officers / sections can cause delay in the disposal of the RTI applications.



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