Saturday, December 12, 2009

Govt to decide on amending RTI after consulting experts

Government will decide on amending the Right to Information (RTI) Act only after consulting civil society organisations and experts, the Rajya Sabha was informed today. Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions Prithviraj
Chavan said during Question Hour that there was a proposal to strengthen RTI by
suitably amending the laws to provide for disclosure by government in all non-strategic areas.

"The Government is examining a proposal for incorporation of provisions in the RTI Act regarding constitution of benches of the information commission and rejection of vexatious and frivolous applications," he said. The amendment would be done with a view to expanding the scope of RTI and withdrawing exemptions given to some agencies.

It would, however, not be carried out before consultations with NGOs, civil society organisations, experts and information commissioners, he said. If the strengthening of RTI can be carried out without amending the law, it would be done, he said.
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