Requiring applicant for information to indicate the purpose of request would abrogate the Act. RTI Act was enacted to ensure transparency and accountability in the working of every public authority and all the instrumentalities of Governments in order to contain corruption (vide Preamble). That is why the framers of the Act specifically required that reason for information would not be required u/s 6(2). Now that exposures of public misdemeanor are being found to be inconvenient to public authorities, an effort is being made to scuttle the peoples rights by the proposed amendment.
Why should the Government like to protect the wrongdoer businessman, builder or politician? The recently unearthed Scams are the gift of these powerful persons? What does it matter that the information can help settle ‘personal scores’? Enough provision is made in the Act to refuse inappropriate information under Section 8 and elsewhere. I oppose the proposal and suggest to all bodies and persons to oppose it.
Justice (Retd)Kamleshwar Nath.
From the Desk of :
Justice Kamleshwar Nath
Up-Lokayukta ( Karnataka ),
Vice Chairman – C.A.T (
Judge – High Court (
`Gunjan', C - 105, Niralanagar,
+91-522-2789033 & +91-522-4016459.
Sent: Sunday, February 20, 2011 10:41 AM
Subject: Re: [HumJanenge] Centre must add purpose clause to RTI Act
In fact, the working of Govt must be totally transparent and as such all the files kept in govt offices should be available for the public for its review. Hence all such information which may be of interest to Public must be put on the website of the concerned department so that there be no need for any body to ask for information through RTI. Further any information given to any one under RTI must be put on the website so that there may not be repeated inquiries for similar information.
Putting restrictions on parting of information would be a retrograde step and must not be encouraged even if it costs a bit to the Govt.as it serves the interest of larger public.
The demand for adding purpose to any query under RTI would demolish the very purpose of enacting RTI which seeks the Govt to keep transparency in its working.
Thu, Feb 17, 2011 at 2:34 PM, Govind... Hoping for better <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Ref: Times of
I completely oppose such move. This will help Babus to deny information. First of all Suo motu disclosure should be implemented, citizens should have free access without time bound to any information. Govt is saying "misuse" because their many wrong doings are coming out. If Government is honest, how one can misuse the information? Misuse can happen only in form of blackmailing. You can let other blackmail you when you know you are wrong. This is a reactive step instead of proactive.
‘Centre must add purpose clause to RTI Act’
Prafulla Marpakwar TNN
Mumbai: Given the doubts raised by a section of chief ministers, the Centre is planning to amend the Right to Information (RTI) Act to curb its misuse.
“A group of chief ministers has approached the Centre for amending the RTI Act. In several cases, it was used to settle personal scores by rival businessmen, builders and politicians,” a senior information commissioner told TOI on Wednesday.
The information commissioner said that when the Democratic Front government promulgated an ordinance in 2004 to provide for right to information, it was specifically mentioned that a person seeking information will have to state the purpose for which the information is required. When the Centre enacted the RTI Act in 2005, this clause was removed. “If the Centre wants to curb misuse, it must include the purpose clause in the act. It will have to move an amendment bill for the purpose,” he said.
The information commissioner said that in Mumbai, the maximum number of applications are filed by the same group of persons. “We are bound to provide information but we don’t know how it will be used,” he said.
In Pune, the commissioner said, of the 2,500-odd appeals pending before the information commission, 800 are filed by 30 persons, while of the 2,200 applications filed under the RTI Act, 1,400 are by one person. “If we know the purpose, we can decide his case on merit,” he said.
If the Centre is serious, the commissioner said, it should ask the states to follow Karnataka government’s example. “Karnataka has made it clear that an application will not have more than 250 words and that in one letter, the applicant will ask questions only about one issue. This has ensured that only genuine applicants seek information,” he said. Secondly, the commissioner said, the act should allow for punitive action against mala fide applicants. Information is provided free of cost to below poverty line (BPL) applicants. In a recent case, a BPL applicant sought information on a project, which comprises 50,000 pages. “It seems that someone was using him to get the information free of cost,” he said.
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