What is the objective of the Right to Information Act? Evaluate the ethics underlying the provisions of this Act. 10 marks

Mentor’s comment-

  • In the introduction start by explaining the background of RTI.
  • In the body explain briefly the provisions of RTI Act 2005. The basic object of the Right to Information Act is to empower the citizens, promote transparency and accountability in the working of the Government, contain corruption, and make our democracy work for the people in real sense. Discuss then the salient features of it. Then discuss the underlying ethical perspectives, explain the benefits such as how it leads to greater good governance.
  • Conclude with importance.

Right to Information Act was passed to empower citizens to obtain their fundamental and human right to information to abide by the essence of Social Contract.

Objectives of Right to Information Act:
1. To empower the citizens
2. To promote transparency and accountability
3. To contain corruption and
4. To enhance people’s participation in democratic process.

Reasons for Adoption of Information Act:

1. Corruption and scandals
2. International pressure and activism
3. Modernization and the information society

Ethicality of RTI:
1. RTI Act, 2005 did not create a new bureaucracy for implementing the law.Instead, it tasked and mandated officials in every office to change their attitude and duty from one of secrecy to one of sharing and openness.
2. Promoted for qualitative standards of Delivery
3. Right to information has been seen as the key to strengthening participatory democracyand ushering in people centred governance.
4. Access to informationcan empower the poor and the weaker sections of society to demand and get information about public policies and actions, thereby leading to their welfare. It showed an early promise by exposing wrongdoings at high places, such as in the organisation of the Commonwealth Games, and the allocation of 2G spectrum and coal blocks.
5. Right to information opens up government’s records to public scrutiny, thereby arming citizens with a vital tool to inform them about what the government does and how effectively, thus making the government more accountable.
6. Improves decision making by public authorityby removing unnecessary secrecy.
7. Transparency: public records are now open to public scrutiny.
8. Accountability: Anyone can visit a public office and ask for any public information.
9. Openness: Earlier public records were only for official purposes.
10. Informed citizenry: the preamble of RTI highlights the importance of informed citizenry for democracy
11. Check on corruption: RTI has acted as a strong deterrent against the corrupt practice due to increased public scrutiny of the acts of the bureaucrats.
12. Rule of Law: Upholding of Rule of Law by providing qualified standards of services as promised by government.
13. Democratize good governance: Promote participatory democracy.
14. Respect of Minority Rights: Development of Trust among masses, especially vulnerable sections.
15. Promote Equitability and inclusiveness.

Way Forward:
1. Open Data Policy: Government institutions should put all disclosable information on their respective websites.
1. Also, a system needs to be put in to weed out such duplicate cases.

2. Preventing Misuse of RTI: RTI misuse can be prevented by introducing the reason knowing provision for filing the petition.
3. Balancing with Privacy Right:Another right of a citizen protected under the Constitution is the right to privacy. This right is enshrined within the spirit of Article 21 of the Constitution. Thus, the right to information has to be balanced with the right to privacy within the framework of law.
4. Increasing Public Awareness:This can be done by the launch of awareness campaigns through Radio, Television and Print Media various regional languages in rural areas. A chapter on RTI Act, 2005 should be added in school/college curriculum.
1. Central/State Information Commissions should be provided with sufficient funds for creating awareness about RTI Act, 2005.

Every progressive society strives towards good governance. Development of RTI is the measure of the efficiency of any administration and in a democracy, as the citizens elect their representatives upon this assurance of good governance and promote transparent accountable governance

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3 years ago


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3 years ago


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