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Jammu Kashmir » Community

Posted at: Apr 21, 2017, 1:06 AM; last updated: Apr 21, 2017, 1:06 AM (IST)

Authorities taking RTI Act lightly: Activists

CIC urged to penalise depts denying info

Srinagar, April 20

The J&K RTI Foundation has claimed that many ‘public authorities’ are exhibiting a non-serious approach towards the implementation of the J&K Right To Information (RTI) Act 2009. It has urged the Chief Information Commission (CIC) of the state to take note of it and “penalise the departments concerned”.

The RTI Act was basically meant to provide information proactively under Section 4 and the Act itself states that the information which cannot be denied to Parliament or the state legislature shall not be denied to any person (Section 8(i) of J&K RTI Act 2009) which shows the extent of empowerment of common man by the Act, the group said in a statement.

However, since the last one month, eight RTI Applications were filed by J&K RTI Foundation members before the public information officers of various departments, including the Rural Development Department, Department of Health and Medical Education, Directorate of Information and Public Relations, Department of Education, Power Development Department and the Food Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Department; and all applications are required to be taken to the commission under Section 15 of the J&K RTI Act 2009.

Assistant Commissioner Development (ACD), Baramulla, ACD, Budgam, Chief Medical Officer, Budgam, Chief Education Officer, Budgam, and the public information officer, Directorate of Health Services, did not even respond to the applications within 30 days which is clearly in violation of law in the state when the Act itself directs providing information as expeditiously as possible.

“The CIC must look into the matter and penalise such officers rather than merely passing orders for provision of information to the applicants,” it said, while adding that one of the reasons that the Act is taken lightly in the state is poor implementation of Section 17 of the Act. — TNS

‘No reply from officials’ 

The J&K RTI Foundatio said Assistant Commissioner Development (ACD), Baramulla; ACD, Budgam; Chief Medical Officer, Budgam; Chief Education Officer, Budgam, and the public information officer, Directorate of Health Services, did not respond to the applications filed by them within 30 days which was clearly in violation of law in the state as the Act itself directs providing information as expeditiously as possible 

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