Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Forget info, now RTI files go missing

Filing an appeal against errant babus holding back information has become an uphill task for the common man. Applicants filing appeals at Central Information Commission (CIC), the final appellate body for Right to Information (RTI) Act 2005, are facing a problem as their files and documents are getting lost mysteriously in the office.

Dr B K Mishra, a resident of Bihar, filed 32 appeals in CIC in December. He was called for a hearing on February 22. When he reached CIC office on the hearing date, he was told that his case files were untraceable. Mishra travelled twice from Bihar only to follow his case.

Information commissioner O P Kejariwal blames shortage of staff and increasing workload of the Commission for this problem. Applicants, however, refuse to buy this infrastructural problem explanation. Jalani alleges that there is collusion." had filed RTI about a case involving huge corruption in Shipping Corporation. When I inquired about my papers at CIC, interestingly, everyone knew my name and about my case but could not locate my file. This means that every staff has read my papers."

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