Right to Information Vs Political Party - GovtVacancy.Net

Right to Information Vs Political Party - GovtVacancy.Net
Posted on 15-07-2022

Right to Information Vs Political Party

RTI activist Subhash Chandra Agrawal had sought details of donations received by some major political parties through the Right to Information Act. But political parties refused to give this information, calling themselves outside the purview of this law. Agarwal presented this matter on behalf of the social organization ADR before the Central Information Commission. The Commission gave a historic judgment on June 3, 2013, saying that political parties are collecting all facilities like land, building, and communication across the country at subsidized rates from the government, so political parties have a  legal and moral responsibility to ensure that their income and expenditure tell the details to the public.


The Central Information Commission in its order said that under Section 2  (h) (i) and (ii) of the Right to Information Act, six political parties are public authorities, as they are substantially funded by the government.


Political parties expressed their displeasure with the decision of the commission. His argument was that if this decision is accepted, all parties would have to deploy information officers at all their party offices across the country,  which would not be practically possible for the parties with limited resources and the second argument was that as soon as it is implemented, RTI There will be a flood of applications, which will be impossible for political parties to handle. Political parties are neither public institutions nor government institutions and they do not even take funds from the government. Therefore, they should not be under the purview of RTI. There can also be apprehension that political rivals will file RTI applications with malicious intent to the Central Public Information Officers of political parties,  which will badly affect their political functioning.


Taking a very important decision, the Central Government on  August 1, 2013 approved an amendment bill proposal to make provisions to keep political parties out of the purview of the  RTI Act. The amendment was introduced in the Lok Sabha on August 12, 2013 by Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions V  Narayanasamy. It was referred to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice headed by Rajya Sabha member Shantaram Naik on 5th September, 2013  for wider deliberation  . The committee is currently  deliberating on this.

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