GS Mains Model Question & Answer : Discuss The Right to Information Act in 2005 and its significance? Comment
Q. Discuss The Right to Information Act in 2005 and its significance ? Comment
Discuss The Right to Information Act in 2005 and its significance?
The passage of Right to Information Act in 2005 by Government of India (Gol)
ensured timely response to citizen requests for government information, marking
a paradigm shift in the citizen-government relationship in India. The real
impact of the landmark legislation is fully reflected in “the famously quoted
statement of a poor village woman when she told a public servant “without the
Act our lives were at stake, and with it now, your job is”. The Act sets out a
practical regime of right to information for citizens. The main objectives of
the law on RT1 are : to operationalize the fundamental right to information; to
set up systems and mechanisms that facilitate people’s easy access to
information; to promote transparency and accountability in governance; to
minimize corruption and inefficiency in public offices and to ensure people’s
participation in governance and decision making.
According section 2 (j), ‘right to information’ includes the right to
- Inspection of work, documents, records;.
- Taking notes, extracts or certified copies of documents or records;
- Taking certified samples of material;
- Obtaining information in the form of diskettes, floppies, tapes, video
cassettes or in any other electronic mode or through printouts where such
information is stored in a computer or in any other device.
It is significant that the principle of open access to administrative documents
has been defined as a right under section 3 and not merely an interpretative
principle which can be invoked regardless of the purpose for which that right is
exercised. The Act mandates both proactive and reactive supply of information,
cataloguing, indexing and computerization of the appropriate records and their
dissemination. In cases, where the right to information has been denied by a
public official, sufficient information must be provided of the reasons of the
refusal. That decision is always reviewable by the appellate authority and the
State Information Commission. Right to information has to include the right to
protected disclosure of sensitive information. As a prelude to a full-fledged
legislation to protect whistle blowers a national resolution on the same has
been issued empowering the Central Vigilance Commissioner.