It refers to news-item on removal of chapters on RTI from text-books of schools in Rajasthan. It is definitely a step in reverse direction. Rather Department of Personnel & Training should co-ordinate with Union Ministry of Human Resource Development (MoHRD) to ensure incorporating chapters on RTI in school text-books of all the states to develop school-children at school-age to become informed citizenry for not only availing their rights through RTI Act but also performing their duty to use the transparency-Act in larger national and public good.
Incorporating chapters of RTI in school text-books will also prepare next generation to use RTI Act with responsibility at a time when the Act is being misused by many in filing RTI petitions of useless, frivolous and vexatious nature harming government-resources.
Rather than killing RTI through indirect means like removing chapters on RTI from school text-books, central government can modify RTI rules to incorporate copying charges of first twenty copied pages in basic RTI fees thus making RTI fees at rupees fifty inclusive of cost for first twenty copied pages but uniformly for all public-authorities and states with no provision for any more fees payable at stage of first or second appeals.
Attractive RTI stamps in denominations of rupees two, ten and fifty can be introduced on lines of erstwhile radio and TV license fees stamps not only to save funds on handling postal-orders (handling cost rupees 37.45 per postal-order) but also to popularise the Act.
SUBHASH CHANDRA AGRAWAL
1775 Kucha Lattushah
Dariba, Chandni Chowk
New Delhi-110006 (India)