Signature campaign for public mobilization on RTI launched in Uttar Pradesh
A signature campaign has been launched in Uttar Pradesh to mop up public opinion on the alleged half-hearted implementation of the Right to Information (RTI) Act in the state on the 10th July. It has got more than 100 signatures of RTI users from the Lucknow city. The principal issues raised during the campaign are:
- Poor understanding of the RTI Act amongst the Public Information Officers (PIO) is a roadblock in the proper and timely disposal of RTI matters.
- Many government departments have the same officer working as the Public Information officer (PIO) and the First Appellate Authority. The wrong appointments affect the functioning under the RTI Act.
- The UP State Information Commission (UPSIC) started functioning from March 22, 2006 and has got a huge pendency of RTI appeals.
The RTI activists and users shared their experiences, and want the implementing authorities to act and remove the anomalies. A charter of demands would be submitted to the Governor, CM and leader of the opposition. The demands include:
- Transparency in appointment of information commissioners,
- Quick disposal of pending RTI cases,
- Speedy and full recovery of fine imposed on government departments for not providing information,
- At least 50% representation of social workers should be nominated in the state level committee constituted under the chief secretary for effective implementation of RTI Act, and
- Protection of RTI users and activists, especially those seeking sensitive information.