LIP SER­VICE TO TRANS­PARENCY

Deccan Chronicle - - Oped -

As­tudy con­ducted by trans­parency watch­dog Cen­tral In­for­ma­tion Com­mis­sion (CIC) has con­cluded that most Cen­tral gov­ern­ment depart­ment web­sites lack suo moto dis­clo­sure of pub­lic in­for­ma­tion un­der a manda­tory pro­vi­sion of the Right to In­for­ma­tion (RTI) Act. While this ob­ser­va­tion may seem pretty self-ev­i­dent to the aam aadmi, it also strength­ens the grow­ing view that the Modi sarkar is less keen on trans­parency, never mind its pub­lic ut­ter­ances.

The eval­u­a­tion was con­ducted by a com­mit­tee com­pris­ing for­mer chief in­for­ma­tion com­mis­sioner A.N. Te­wari and for­mer in­for­ma­tion com­mis­sioner M.M. An­sari. The aim was to as­cer­tain the qual­ity of suo moto dis­clo­sures un­der Sec­tion 4 of the RTI Act made by var­i­ous pub­lic au­thor­i­ties. The com­mit­tee evolved an eval­u­a­tion for­mat and re­quested all pub­lic au­thor­i­ties to fill it up.

Out of 2,092 pub­lic au­thor­i­ties reg­is­tered with the com­mis­sion, feed­back was re­ceived from only 838. Among its ma­jor find­ings, the CIC re­port said miss­ing in­for­ma­tion largely re­lates to “pol­icy on trans­fer and post­ing of se­nior of­fi­cers de­ployed at im­por­tant and sen­si­tive places; de­tails of do­mes­tic and for­eign vis­its un­der­taken by the se­nior of­fi­cials and sources and meth­ods of fund­ing po­lit­i­cal par­ties or iden­ti­fi­ca­tion of donors”, among oth­ers.

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