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mains Test Series 2018
Q. Misuse of RTI act: Comment on misuse of RTI act by government agencies.
Jan 24, 2017 Related to : GS Paper-2

Ans :

Introduction-

Recent analysis by the news paper Business line has found that government agencies and institutions are increasingly finding ways to decline information sought under the Right to Information Act (RTI), 2005. The experience of citizens in using the RTI to access information has been largely less than satisfactory. 

Issues-

  • Section 8(1) of the RTI Act it allows the government to deny any information that it perceives to be prejudicial to the sovereignty and integrity of the country, its security, strategic and economic interests or lead to incitement of an offence and would disproportionately divert resources of the public authority.
  • Government agencies are often using this section to deny information requests. Similarly they are finding ways to ensure that the RTI Act becomes an ineffective tool available to the citizens, thus defeating the very purpose for which it was enacted in the first place.

Analysis-

  • The Act empowered citizens to hold public functionaries accountable for their actions. The RTI Act has helped expose large scams at the central and State level in the past. But in recent times it has been misused by government agencies continuously to deny information.  
  • The government must be committed to democratic values and should work to improve transparency and be more accountable to the people it serves.
  • Hence the government should effectively implement the RTI act in letter and spirit, as it empowers the citizens to hold public functionaries accountable for their actions.

Conclusion-

RTI act is intended to improve the transparency and accountability in the functioning of the government. By denying the information the government agencies are defeating the very purpose of act. In this background government which is committed to democratic values must implement it in letter and spirit.


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