Sunday, July 11, 2010

IB, RAW refuse to part with information on human rights

The country’s intelligence agencies — RAW and Intelligence Bureau — have refused to make public the information on cases related to human rights violation and corruption against their personnel though the RTI Act states otherwise. Interestingly, both the agencies wrongfully cited section 24 of the RTI Act for denial of response to the petitioner. According to the section, Central intelligence and security organisations have been kept outside the ambit of the RTI Act except for allegations of human rights violation or corruption. “As per the provision of the RTI Act 2005... the Intelligence Bureau has been exempted from providing any information or detail. Hence it is regretted that the information sought cannot be provided,” said the Public Information Officer of IB in his reply. Exercising his Right to Information, petitioner Ashwini Shrivastava, had asked for information related to cases of corruption, human rights violation and sexual exploitation in IB, RAW and Central Paramilitary Forces. In its reply, Assam Rifles said it has registered 39 cases related to alleged human rights violation and two cases of corruption in the past ten years. No such cases were witnessed by National Security Guard (NSG) and Indo-Tibetan Border Police Force personnel. However, four other Central paramilitary forces — CRPF, CISF, SSB and BSF denied to make public the information.

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