RTI workshop, way forward

Dear Editor,

Haryana Chief Secretary deserves all compliments for holding a special RTI workshop on 06.04.2016 at Chandigarh for senior officers of the state exclusively for purpose of ensuring better compliance of section 4 of RTI Act in the state. Chief Secretary gave so much importance to the workshop that he remained present throughout duration of the workshop.

Section 4 for sue-motto disclosure of information on website without being asked through filing of RTI petitions is the soul of RTI Act and its proper compliance by all public-authorities at the centre and different states can reduce number of RTI petitions being filed to just half. But unfortunately it is the most neglected section of RTI Act perhaps because there is no penal-provision for implementing authority in RTI Act in regard to section 4.

Even Prime Minister in his inaugural address of CIC-convention on 16.10.2016 at Vigyan Bhawan (New Delhi) stressed on digitalisation of information. Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT) should devise some mechanism for ensuring best compliance of section 4 of RTI Act by all public-authorities at centre and in states without requiring any amendment in RTI Act.

One way can be to adopt policy of ‘name and shame’ by massive publicity of those poor in compliance of section 4 of RTI Act. Funds spent on such publicity will be much-much less than that saved by large reduction in filed RTI petitions. Also public-authorities considered best in compliance of section 4 of RTI Act can be encouraged also to motivate others through awards and publicity.



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