Friday, March 5, 2010

PM Manmohan Singh will lose respect at this rate

Recent news of PM wanting to cut citizens’ rights under RTI act is highly deplorable.   This is the same PM who has reportedly vouched for aam-aadmi in his speeches, and at one instance chided Indian business houses on dangers of crony capitalism.  Well, now he has to answer who will benefit by following actions:

1. Chief justice of India will be outside purview of RTI act.  Isn’t it some kind of cronyism developing between Executive and Judiciary?

2. No frivolous queries will be allowed.  The courts in India have 3 crore pending cases.  No body checks how many are frivolous.  In elections, 100s of candidates can stand for an election seat.  Inspite of huge cost incurred due to so many candidates, no body condemns that some of the candidates are ‘frivolous’.  But when it comes to RTI, the frivolous ones must be disallowed.  And of course, it goes without saying, the information behind decision to decide what is frivolous will not be disclosed so that the bureaucrats are safe.  So it is some kind of crony bureaucratism.

New Delhi: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi are reportedly split over amending the Right to Information Act.

In a rare instance, the Prime Minister has said a firm no to Sonia's suggestions and has decided to go ahead with amendments in the RTI Act.

Singh has reportedly written a letter to Sonia saying that changes are needed in the RTI Act after the Congress President expressed her doubts and made it clear that she does not want it to be amended.

The proposed changes in RTI by the Prime Minister will keep the Chief Justice of India out of purview of the Act.

Some of the amendments proposed to the RTI Act are:

  • Chief Justice of India would be outside the purview of the Act.

  • Discussions on policy decisions cannot be made public.

  • No frivolous queries would be allowed and necessary changes in the Act would have to be made.

The Congress President, who is also the Chairperson of the United Progressive Alliance, had written to the Prime Minister about two months ago explaining her why she does not want any amendment to the Act, which was a landmark legislation of UPA 1 and seen as her baby.

Her views on not amending the RTI have been endorsed by NGOs and the Left parties.

But with the Prime Minister himself stepping in and saying no to her, changes in the Act seem inevitable.

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