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Thread: Suggestion for improvement of RTI Act and it's functionality

  1. #145

    Re: Suggestion for improvement of RTI Act and it's functionality

    I thank Ganpat1956 for the edit .


  2. #146
    Rep Power

    Re: 2nd Appeals with SICs – Problems Met With

    [quote=MK Singhal;2367]In the case of appeals/complaints to SICs (State Information Commissions), the Appellant/Complainant is located far away from the office of SIC (eg I, an Appellant/Complainant, is located at Noida and my SIC concerned is located at Lucknow) hence it is difficult for Appellant/Complainant to present themselves for hearing at the office of SIC, specially so since the time between the notice and hearing is very small.

    In most such cases, SIC passes orders exparte. I was wondering if the following suggestions could be got implemented by SICs:
    1. The office of SIC should give the appeal/complaint number and the date of hearing in his office as soon as the appeal/complaint is received and accepted for hearing, say within a week, as is done in the normal courts where appeal number and date of hearing is fixed soon after the appeal is received and accepted for hearing (generally within a week of receipt of such appeal). It is of course understood that the date of hearing would be fixed according to the time schedule of the Hon SICs and could be long after.
    2. The office of SIC should give at least one reference, say, the date of appeal/complaint, for reference in the notices for hearing issued by it. It is specially important if many appeals/complaints are filed against the same Respondent by the Appellant/Complainant.
    3. The office of SIC should require the Respondent to file a written statement/submission on the points raised by the Appellant/Complainant in their appeal/complaint and send it both to the SIC and the Appellant/Complainant before the hearing. On receipt of such written statement from the Respondent, the Appellant/Complainant may like to submit another written statement/submission to the SIC under copy to the Respondent who may again respond on it. The final orders of SIC should take into account such written statements before finalizing orders on such cases. Suitable punishment on the Respondent u/s 20(1) and 19(8)(b) of the RTI Act 05 must be imposed by SIC if default is established to ensure non recurrence of such defaults in future.
    4. The office of SIC should require the Appellants/Complainants to submit only two copies (instead of 4 copies as seems to be the present practice) of the appeal/complaints to him and one copy directly to the Respondent for submitting a written statement/submission on the points raised therein. Such appeals/complaints are heard by only a single judge and hence only two copies at the most should be enough for his office.
    5. The office of SIC must give notice of its decision, including any right to appeal, to the appellant/complainant and the Respondent under section 19(9) of the Right to Information Act 2005. It is seen that this is not being complied with by SICs at present.
    6. The SIC should get the procedure for appeals finalized under section 19(10) of the Right to Information Act 2005 to bring in better systems in this regard.


  3. #147

    Re: Suggestion for improvement of RTI Act and it's functionality

    Dear Er. Sood,
    As per the procedures, after the final decision of CIC and thereafter the Public authority do not comply with the decision of CIC within the stipulated time, we are to file a fresh complaint u/s. 18 with CIC, giving all the facts.
    We have done it in many cases, prayed for disciplinary action against the PIO, Penalty and compensation from the PIO>
    I would advice you to prepare your complaint for the order as passed by PB and pressurise CIC to pass orders for penalty, disciplinary action and compensation.
    a CONSUMER and RTI activist
    Officially Certified A Grade by DoPT


  4. #148

    Suggestion for improvement of RTI Act and it's functionality

    I definitely think that a reform is called for here . Once a decision has been passed by the CIC and the concerned PIO does not obey either partially or fully or within the prescribed time , there should be no need for the appellant to go through the whol exercise again .

    Moreover, what happens if CIC asks PA/PIO to comply with certain directions within the prescribed time with which appellant is not concerned , but it fails to do that . Wouldnt the CIC take suo moto cognizance and proceed against it ? Would CIC first ask the appellant to make a reference to it ? But that is not possible because the appellant would never know if the CIC's directions have been complied with or not, if it does not involve him .

    I seem to have read somewhere the CIC is contemplating getting power akin to Contempt of Court ,. Would some one tell us more about that ?


  5. Re: Suggestion for improvement of RTI Act and it's functionality

    Government does not propose to make any amendments to RTI Act for the time being : Letter from Department of Personnel & Training

    R.S. Praveen Raj
    Last edited by sandeepbaheti; 13-09-09 at 10:08 PM. Reason: Removing external links

  6. Re: Impact of CICs decisions and suggestion for improvement of RTI Act and it's functionality

    I submit my experience with CIC's commission and effects of CIC commission’s decision as below. I had asked information from CPIO, Central Ground Water Board(CGWB) by submitting Rs 500 as fees in order to bring out the truth behind the anomalies in the seniority list of Assistant Executive Engineer and to get justice to some of honest officers who, at verge of promotion to Executive Engineer had been suddenly pushed down in the seniority and also to put an end to the unethical practices in the recruitment and promotions, happening behind the scene. Against the above first application, the documents furnished by CPIO,CGWB either found to be false and fabricated or incomplete or non readable due to poor photocopying or wrong and misleading. CPIO, gave false and fabricated documents to avoid to detection of manipulation carried out in the seniority list of Assistant Executive Engineer. Hence I appealed to Appellate Authority CGWB. I requested the Appellate Authority to inquire in respect of submission of false and fabricated documents. To my shock, the most of documents and information provided by Appellate Authority either found to be non readable due to poor photo copying or found to misleading and irrelevant. Some of vital documents like DPC proceedings are found to be suppressed. The Appellate Authority created an impression with tricky wordings that all informations and documents had been furnished. Hence I filed second appeal before CIC. Subsequently I came to understand that the information not provided by CGWB is available with Ministry of Water of Resources. Mean time, the department promoted some of officers who got undue advantage in seniority due to manipulation. Some of promotee officers only within three months of promotion to post of AEE, again promoted to post of Executive Engineer though they did not fulfill the eligibility criteria of possessing of 5 years of experience as AEE for promotion to Executive Engineer. The affected honest direct recruit officers had already nearly completed 10 years and did not get promotion to Executive Engineer due to above manipulation. Subsequently I had sought informations and documents not provided by CGWB from Ministry of Water Resources (MOWR) by depositing Rs 300. The Ministry initially dodged me by returning back the DD telling that it should be in name of PAO. Again I submitted Rs 500 as fees and also requested them to include the mode of payment details in their Ministry’s website. The Ministry diverted a part of application to CGWB. The Ministry after expiry of 30 days, furnished information pertaining to few points. MOWR did not furnish DPC proceedings telling that CIC had given decision that it is confidential and do not serve public purpose and hence need not be disclosed. To most of vital documents, they had stated that the documents had been destroyed which is contradictory to the affidavit filed by them before the Hon’ble court, t wherein they had clearly stated that the documents since 1992 had been traced out. Also I downloaded the decisions of CIC where in CIC had asked CGWB disclose the DPC proceedings. Hence I appealed to Appellate Authority, MOWR enumerating the above facts and requested him to furnish the vital documents. The Appellate Authority did not reply. Hence I submitted the second appeal to CIC. In respect of part of application diverted to CGWB, the CPIO demanded Rs 170 seperately though I had already submitted Rs 500 to ministry for which they had not provided the documents within 30 days. As the information was very much important and needed urgently, I submitted Rs 300 to CPIO, CGWB seeking fresh additional information including for Rs 170. The CPIO,CGWB returned back the DD saying that it should be in the favour of DDO, instead of PAO. Hence I again submitted Rs 300 drawn in favour of DDO,CGWB. The CPIO,CGWB did not provide information and instead some gave irrelevant records and adjusted the amount deposited to him against the postal charges and hinted me to apply fresh. Hence against this I appealed to the Appellate Authority. I had also requested the appellate authority to include about the payment of fees details in their CGWB website. The Appellate Authority blatantly gave misleading replies and to some of points pertaing to review DPC, he blatantly lied that no such documents and correspondences pertaining to review DPC are not available. I submitted second appeal against CGWB to CIC in respect of part of application diverted to CGWB and in respect of fresh additional information sought from CGWB. Subsequently I received the summon in respect of my first application against CGWB from CIC asking myself and CPIO,CGWB to appear before them. Subsequently the Appellate Authority, MOWR reviewed the decision of CPIO and asked the CPIO, MOWR to furnish all the informations sought by me. CPIO MOWR gave only some vital documents like Minutes of DPC. Some of vital informations and documents were evaded from furnishing so that all the documents establishing the manipulation can not be linked. I strongly feel that due to penalty clause, CPIO,MOWR do not want to take much risk and hence provided some documents containing evidences of manipulation. I got the review DPC minutes from which is shockingly seen that the effective dates mentioned in DPC and in promotional order are totally different. I got the above vital documents only after 10 months of struggle which clearly establishes the manipulation carried out and also it establishes the unethical practices in the recruitment and promotion in the CGWB. During 10 months, the department had promoted all the promotee officers who got undue manipulation in seniority to the post of Executive Engineer. Subsequently, My first application against CGWB came for hearing and during hearing CIC commission did not review whether pointwise the information are furnished by the CPIO,CGWB. They had not obtained pointwise written reply statement from the respondents. The commissioner was very much prejudiced. CIC commission simply ignored the false and fabricated documents, wrong information and incomplete information furnished by CPIO and gave decisions depriving me of vital information. Immediately after decision of CIC commission, the department started intimidating the honest officer by ordering his transfer to remote place situated at longest distance affected severely by terrorism, in order to thwart me from exposing the unethical practices in the department. Subsequently my second appeal against MOWR came for hearing and without reviewing pointwise, similar decision depriving of vital information was given by CIC. Subsequently in respect of second appeal against CGWB in respectt of part of application diverted to CGWB and fresh additional informations, the CIC refused to hear the case telling that already the above application had been disposed off ignoring the fact the application disposed off is only part of application against MOWR and part of application diverted to CGWB is not yet disposed off by CIC. Ultimately CIC had not helped me to get vital documents like correspondences and proposal sents to UPSC in respect of review DPC which is very much essential to establish how at different stages, proposals of modified accommodating the officer of their desire illegally. I strongly believed the CIC instead of ensuring me the fundamental right to access the information, the CIC had denied the same. I strongly feel that if my case had been heard by commissioners like Sri Shailesh Gandhi, who analyses the case critically I would have got the requisite information sought by me which in turn helped the direct recruits in getting justice in time and to restore dharma, ethics and moral values in the department. I strongly feel, the cases should be allocated randomly to Information commissioner or the appellant should be given liberty to choose the Information commissioners. By randomly allocating, everybody will get the hope and probability of their cases being listed before the commissioner whom they feel wise enough to understand their case and help them to get requisite information sought by them. This in turn will help the appellant and the country in many ways. By giving option of choosing Information commissioner, it will bring pressure on information commissioner to be more symphatic to causes of public and this in turn will improve the decision making. I do not know how to proceed further to get the left out information and documents not furnished by CGWB and MOWR which are very vital in establishing the manipulation and unethical practices carried out in order to favour some officers of desire for hidden reasons and to get justice for the honest officers affected by above manipulation and unethical practices. I strongly feel that the anomalies are indirect indicator and evidence for corruption. Corruption in recruitment and promotion is very dangerous and will de establish the country as the honest officers will be slowly replaced by corrupt and incompetent officers which in turn propagates chain reaction of corruption at all levels. The countries like Somalia</ST1lace, Iraq,Afghanistan</ST1lace,Myanmar, etc, occupying top position as most corrupted countries, had been affected by intolerable level of internal conflicts, crime, inhuman killings and terrorism. The corruption index of <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com /><st...=3><FONT face=Let us pray Almighty to save our beloved country and to spread the message of Dharma, ethics in all walks of life of every Indian citizen so that all citizens live happily by helping and developing each other. </B>SATHYA MEVA JAYATHE.

  7. #151

    I must sympathise with Pradeepa . Whatever he has narrated is symptomatic of the malaise that prevails in our country in various Government Departments .

    Having stated this , I must comment on some of the issues that he has raised :

    a) Stating that appeals be marked to a particular IC , means a reflection on the capabilities and integrity of other ICs . This is not acceptable . That apart, specific departments have been allocated to the ICs by the CIC , and they must necessarily deal with those Departments only . And finally, if everyone would start opting for the named IC, what would others do ???

    b) Outright condemnation of CIC's functioning is also not acceptable . CIC is doing a good job inspite of infrastructural difficulties and huge pendencies . I filed a second appeal on 12.3.2009 against a particular PA, and that has already been listed for 22.5.2009 .

    c) ON CIC website, as well as on this Portal, you can read several RTI success stories .
    An aberration or two, here and there - as in your case - cannot be interpreted to mean that the entire system is defective and worthless .

    d) CIC is not the body to comment on the genuiness of a particular document /information provided by the PAs . This is the job of a Vigilance/ Investigation agency like the CVC /CBI . Of course, if the photocopies are not readable/dim, CIC should be able to direct the concerned PIO to provide readable copies .

    e) As re: payment mode, you made a mistake by making a draft payable to a particular payee without checking first with the concerned PIO and lost time and money in the process.

    f) Your case can not be resolved by just blaming the system , you have indeed got help to the extent that you have been able to finally get DPC minutes .

    g) We cannot criticise Commissioners , who perform judicial functions, like we cannot criticise judges . They are also human beings working under pressure, and they are prone to mistakes , like the Judges . Sometimes, even the Apex Court reverses its earlier decisions passed by another bench .

    h) That being so, there are appellate procedures, for instance in the case of orders passed by the CIC, the aggrieved appellant is free to appeal to Delhi High Court which has jurisdiction over it .

    i) While one must agree that there is wide spread corruption in our country , it would be difficult to agree that it is increasing by the day . In fact, sometime ago, I remember to have read a document that in the corruption index, our country's name has gone down , indicating improved governance .

    j) Finally, I deprecate the comments comparing India to poor, war ravaged countries like Iraq, Somalia, Afghanistan etc . There is democracy in our country, and general elections are on . Such sweeping remarks about our country cannot be accepted by any self respecting Indian .

    For easy readability, please split your post ito paragraphs if it is long.

    Summary : You seem to be a fighter, so I urge that you continue your fight , but blaming the deficiencies in the system, attributing faults on the parts of some individuals and complaining will take you NOWHERE .

    Pradeepa - and others - would be glad to learn that the Hon CIC has taken note of his complaint and listed it for discussions at the full IC's Meeting scheduled for 5 May .

    Good luck.
    Dr Arun Agrawal
    Last edited by ganpat1956; 01-05-09 at 06:26 PM.

  8. #152
    NK Agarwal
    Blog Entries
    Rep Power

    Re: Suggestion for improvement of RTI Act and it's functionality

    Dear Mr. Pradeepa,
    What you have cited is a common practice followed by PIOs and FAAs in case of DPC proposals, proceedings and ACRs.
    CIC has no mechanism of its own to monitor implementation of their decisions even if they have asked for action taken report.
    In case of non-implementation or partial implementation of CICs decision, the appellant has to file a complaint to CIC. With pendency figures running in thousands, the complaint would take months if not years to reach hearing/ decision.


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