Would RTI request "depository institutions" be a good idea?
Like some others writing on this website, I too have had trouble in the past simply getting my initial RTI requests recognized. There are various threads already on what kinds of postal services seem to work, whether email helps, what other options are available, etc.
I have a suggestion for a possible institutional remedy to this problem faced frequently by many people, and I thought I'd share it so it can be evaluated.
Suppose the CIC recognizes various institutions (not necessarily govt depts, or public sector bodies but even NGOs or for that matter, even other private bodies) as valid "depository institutions" for the submission of initial RTI requests? In other words someone wanting to submit an RTI request to RBI or SEBI would have the option of preparing the request addressed to that PA but actually submit to this depository institution (call it RTI Citizen Service Center [RTI-CSC] for this discussion), and pay the Rs.10 application fee. The RTI-CSC will transmit the request to the PIO, and that will be deemed a valid submission to the PA.
I acknowledge that there are many key details that need to be fleshed out. If the submission is not all electronic, the costs could be significant, and how to ensure that costs are met is an issue. Who would be willing to serve as an RTI-CSC? Who will vet a potential RTI-CSC? And many other questions I am sure.
However, while I am not a lawyer, I believe that this type of partial remedy to the problem can be implemented without requiring an amendment to the RTI Act, and only a willingness on the part of the CIC to modify its rules, which I think is a simpler matter.
This problem of not recognizing the initial RTI request is analogous to the police being reluctant to file FIRs, because their crime-fighting statistics look so much better if no crimes are recognized! I wonder if in that domain something has been done that we could learn from to help improve RTI initial request acceptance. Best,
Re: Would RTI request "depository institutions" be a good idea?
It is a welcome suggestion. By this method the application of common citizen can suitably modified to yield proper response from PIO
Originally Posted by murgie