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RTI norms: CIC to hear complaints against 6 political parties

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New Delhi: A full bench of the Central Information Commission will hear on Friday complaints against six national political parties for non-compliance of its order that they came within the ambit of RTI Act and had to put in place all mandatory requirements under the law.
The Commission on June 3, last year had declared Congress, BJP, CPI, CPI(M), NCP and BSP as public authorities answerable under the Right to Information (RTI) Act and given them six weeks to comply with the mandatory requirements under the law for the processing of information seeking applications.

But none of the political parties followed the directives of the quasi-judicial body which are a binding as per the RTI Act unless a contrary order is received from a High Court through a writ petition.

The parties neither challenged the order by approaching a High Court nor any amendment was brought before the Parliament to make changes in the law.

Following the disregard of the verdict given by the transparency panel, activists Subhash Agrawal, R K Jain and voluntary organisation Association for Democratic Reforms filed complaint with the CIC.

“It’s been more than 17 months since the CIC’s order and till now none of the six political parties has complied with the CIC’s order… This is a clear case of open defiance of a statutory authority by the six political parties and is not conducive to the functioning of a democratic society,” ADR said in a statement.

It further said that this non-compliance has a “very serious detrimental effect on the state of democracy in the country at large”.

A bench of Vijai Sharma, Manjula Parashar and Sharat Sabharwal will hear the complaint.

PTI

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