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 THE RIGHT TO INFORMATION ACT, 2005
 

 

 

Your Right to Know

 

The right to information act (RTI ACT) became effective law W.e.f 12-10-2005. It is a short and simple act comprising of 31 sections but extremely powerful, the likes of which India has never witnessed before. The RTI Act has heralded citizen’s rights to be recognized and thereby made participative democracy possible. If well implemented and well used, real Swaraj will dawn.

     
  The RTI Act empowers citizens. It has given them a tool to know how governments function, Information can be demanded from the public authorities; i.e, all government bodies and organizations substantially financed by government including NGO’s, all public sector undertakings, all bodies and institutions of self government established or constituted by any law made by Parliament or State Legislature and so on.

All citizens have right to know status of their applications for any matter such as ration card, passport, water-connection, Income-tax refund due, etc. Any citizen may like to know how his MP/MLA has used funds allocated to him and how funds are earmarked for different projects. These he can know.The RTI Act has the power to lead to transparency and accountability in governance, and curbing corruption

We request citizens to become part of RTI users family. We urge you to join this movement to benefit you and benefit others. Your rights under the documents, records, taking notes, extracts of the said documents etc, taking certified samples of the material, obtaining information in the form of floppies, tapes or any other electronic mode or through printouts etc.

The Central and State Government’s have the right to frame the rules in term of fees, forms and procedures in consonance with the RTI Act. Application fees for the Central Government are Rs. 10. For the State of Gujarat it is Rs 20. Format of application form prescribed under Maharashtra Right to Information Rules is very simple.

Filing fees for the application can be paid to any Central Government Authority by postal order of Rs.10 or by payment in cash at any designated post office. List of designated post offices in Mumbai, Thane, Kalyan are available on www.indiapost.gov.in. For application to any other authority of Maharashtra Government, mode of payment includes cash or court fee stamp of Rs.10. For RTI application to any central Government Department , Post Offices also provide service to deliver it free of cost. You many send application by post or hand delivery.

Be careful in framing the questions you ask for seeking information. Please note that you are seeking information and not the opinion of Public Information Officer (PIO) of the authority. You cannot ask why; e.g, why you have not issued my tax-refunds though overdue? But , you can ask: Please inform when my overdue refund will be issued. Believe us; on asking such a question, you will receive the refund within 30 days.

The Act provides list of certain information which can be denied. The Act also deals with the provision for appeals, levy of penalty and other related matters.

RTI Act provides for a time bound and defined process for citizens to access information. Severe Penal Provisions exist in the Act. Normally all laws provide penalty for citizens for no action or wrong action. Here is an Act which penalizes bureaucrats for the same from Rs.250 a day for any default to a maximum amount of Rs.25000.

Besides the information you seek, in the form other basic details are to be provided. Under 3/IV, you say: either by post or in person by calling me on--------(Provide cell No). Providing telephone number would help PIO to contact you , for any query, rather than write to you, delaying the information


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