News

Bill introduced in Lok Sabha to keep parties out of RTI Act’s ambit

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on August 12, 2013

The CIC order had termed Congress, BJP, BSP, NCP, CPI and CPI-M as political authorities.

The Government on Monday introduced a Bill in the Lok Sabha to keep political parties out of the purview of the Right to Information Act (RTI), much to the chagrin of RTI activists.

The amendment Bill also negates a Central Information Commission (CIC) order, which sought to include political parties under the RTI for reasons of transparency.

The Right to Information (Amendment) Bill, 2013 seeks to insert an explanation in Section 2 of the Act, which states that any association or body of individuals registered or recognised as political party under the Representation of the People Act, 1951, will not be considered a public authority.

The CIC order had termed the Congress, BJP, BSP, NCP, CPI and CPI-M as political authorities, as it felt that these were availing public funds.

“The expression authority or body or institution of self-government established or constituted by any law made by Parliament shall not include any association or body of individuals registered or recognised as political party under the Representation of the People Act, 1951,” the explanation reads.

Referring to the CIC order of June, the Bill also makes it clear that anything contained in any judgement, decree or order of any court or commission, will not affect the status of political parties recognised under the 1951 Act.

Since the CIC order on six major political parties came on June 3, the amended Act will come into force with retrospective effect from June 3.

Meanwhile, RTI activists, led by former National Advisory Council member Aruna Roy, have written to all six political parties, raising some questions and seeking a public dialogue on their concerns, before taking a stance on the issue in Parliament.

aditi.n@thehindu.co.in

Published on August 12, 2013
null
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor