Wednesday, 28 December 2011

RTI Act :Good Governance leading to transparency without corruption ? ...4

Under section 6 of the act, it is clearly defined that in a large number of cases information sought to be accessed stems from a grievance against a department as the information is the starting point for  justice to citizen and to fight corruption and maladministration for transparent good governance in agency or department , whatsoever but experience in most cases stipulates that bureaucrates / politicians try their best to be defensive and lacks proactive in.lue to redress the  grievances and avoid to provide information as well as dare-enough to give false information in some cases leading to pendency of appeals. In case of public grievances directly pertaining to misbehavior & conduct.                                                                                                                                           Act clearly provides  mechanism that “This proclivity underlines the
need for an independent forum to hear complaints into acts of omission and commission,harassment, corruption etc. which emerge either through information collected under the Right to Information Act or otherwise. Such an independent body should hear the citizen and the public authority, come to an early conclusion about how the complaint can be best redressed, and where dereliction of duty is established, recommend initiation of disciplinary actions, and also suggest systemic reforms where required. A successful example of this mechanism is the Public Grievances Commission (PGC) set up by the Delhi Government in 1997. When the Delhi Right to Information Act came into force in 2001, the PGC was made the appellate authority to decide appeals under the Act. Because of this arrangement the PGC has become an effective “single window” authority which facilitates access to information and when required provides a platform for redressing the citizen’s grievances as well. The PGC has also effectively used its statutory status and authority under Delhi RTI Act combined with its non-statutory grievance redressal powers to foster systemic reforms. and the Commission is of the view that similar arrangements could be replicated (with suitable modifications) by other states. A beginning could be made with bigger cities”.
                                             Strong mechanism is given but what, we more need is sensitivity towards provision of the act and fear of strict action in case of false furnishing of information or delay by some fearless bureaucrat’s towards law. Common masses as well as department officials (societies mainly) too are furnished with wrong information, making a joke of the act, Such higher officials need to be punished without delay by concerned PIO’s of department and recommend necessary action.

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