Do your bit to improve implementation of RTI Act in Maharashtra.
Do you want RTI Act to be implemented in letter and spirit in Maharashtra? Do you have Information Commission’s Orders which denied information to you in violation of the RTI Act?
If that is so then read the message below :
As you all may be aware the way RTI Act is being implemented in Maharashtra needs a lot of improvement.
Several prominent RTI users have constantly brought to the notice of the State Chief Information Commissioner about the flaws in its implementation and the corrections needed.
Yet despite all the efforts, there are no signs of improvement especially after more and more retired bureaucrats get appointed to the post of Information Commissioner in gross violation of the procedure laid down for their appointment under Sec. 12 (5) of RTI Act.
It is an open secret that these ex-bureaucrats-turned-Information-Commissioners have great sympathy for the Public Information Commissioners (PIOs) and First Appellate Authorities (FAAs) rather than for the transparency in the governance process or the Preamble of the RTI Act. Thus they dish out RTI’s Second Appeal Orders and Complaint Orders in gross violation of the provisions of the RTI Act, thus shielding the PIOs and FAAs. This, in turn, leads to irregularities, non-implementation of laws, abuse of powers and corruption in the governance process.
Now the onus is on us concerned citizens to show them the mirror. So a group of RTI users are planning to bring to the notice of the Maharashtra Chief Information Commissioner all the Orders of Information Commissioners (ICs) which are violative and not adhereing to the RTI Act.
So we urge you to provide us a copy of the RTI Orders which fit into the following category. We shall then hand them over to the Chief SIC, upload them on our website ( www.PetitionGroup.Com ) and on social media, to let all know how our Maharashtra State Information Commission functions contrary to the Preamble of this sunshine law – i.e. for transparency, accountability and curbing corruption in the governance process. Once we have substantial no. of Orders which reveal violation and non-adherence to the RTI Act, then we shall, in addition to broadcasting it in social media, approach the Governor (and even Court) urging him to dismiss the concerned IC on the grounds that he/she is:–
a. Is incompetent.
b. Is insane.
c. Is dishonest.
d. Violates the Preamble of the RTI Act.
e. Destroys the spirit and purpose of RTI Act.
So if you have State Information Commission’s orders which violate the following provisions then kindly email it to us on this id ( firstname.lastname@example.org ) stating which points / Sections from below are violated by the Info. Commissioner (IC), applicant’s name, WhatsApp no. and email id.
- IC has not levied a penalty of Rs. 250 per day upon the PIO for the delay in providing information. (This violates Sec. 20 (1) of RTI Act).
- IC has not imposed disciplinary action upon the PIO when applicant has proved that despite the Order of the FAA, the PIO has not disclosed the information or that you have proved that the PIO has wilfully, and mala fidely denied information to protect the guilty. (This violates Sec. 20 (2) of the RTI Act.)
- IC has not imposed penalty or passed strictures upon PIO [under Sec. 20(1) or Sec. 20(2) or Sec. 19(8) ] when the PIO has not provided information within 30 days. (This violates Sec. 7 (1) of RTI Act.)
- IC has not passed strictures nor imposed penalties when the PIO denies information quoting Sec. 2 (f) of RTI Act. (This violates Sec. 8 and 9 of RTI Act)
- IC has not passed strictures nor imposed penalties when the PIO denied information on the pretext of “Information is not available in the format sought”. (This violates Sec. 7(9) of the RTI Act.)
- IC has not passed strictures nor imposed penalty when the PIO denies information without referring to Sec. 8 or Sec. 9 of RTI Act and without providing reasons for the denial. (This violates Sec. 7 (2) and 19(5) of the RTI Act.
- IC has not passed strictures nor imposed penalty when the PIO denies information without referring to any Sections of law, procedure, standard operating procedure (SoP) or that the applicant has “asked questions in the application” etc. (This violates Sec. 4 of the RTI Act.
- IC has not passed strictures nor imposed penalties when the FAA does not pass speaking Order before the end of the hearing and/or does not give a reasoned Order in writing on the First Appeal hearing. Please note that the “Speaking Order” i.e. the gist of the Order, which the IC would be passing, is verbally informed to the Appellant before the IC completes the hearing. (This violates High Court of Bombay Order by Justice V C Daga in Writ Petition No. 4101 of 2007. This Order lists out the procedure to be followed by a Quasi-Judicial body such as the Information Commission etc.
- When the IC himself does not pass Speaking Order before the end of the hearing and/or does not give a reasoned Order in writing on the Second Appeal / Complaint hearing. This too is violative of the High Court of Bombay Order as stated in the point above.
- When the IC has not disposed of the “Show Cause Notice” within 15 days. (This too is violative of the High Court of Bombay Order as stated in point no. 8 above.)
This information shall be of great help to Hon. Chief State Information Commissioner – Mr. Sumeet Mullick in taking action and/or reprimanding and make representation against such Hon’ble ICs to the Governor and Maharashtra Govt’s GAD Dept.
The above is with due respect to honest, efficient and diligent ICs and in the interest of transparency, accountability and better governance in our Country.
There is no intention to cause hurt and injury to any person and /or institution.