What is RTI and how to apply? , Right to Information Act

What is RTI? (RTI Act in Hindi) Although India became independent in 1947, but in reality the people of India cannot be called completely independent. This is because we are not able to fully exercise our rights and without exercising the rights we cannot call ourselves free. We have some rights which we have been deprived of till now. If we know our rights and use them well then we can call ourselves free. One of such rights is the Right to Information, which every citizen of India is entitled to.

It is a right that gives the common citizen a feeling of being powerful. A right that can be used by the common citizen to shake even the chair of big politicians and officers. This right reminds the politicians and officials that nothing is greater than the rights of the common citizen. This right is called  the right to information .

In today’s article, you will learn about all the important information related to Right to Information (RTI). What is Right to Information (RTI), what is the importance of Right to Information, how to enter RTI, etc. will be explained in detail today. So let’s move ahead and know the complete information about the Right to Information Act .

What is RTI? – What is RTI in Hindi

What is RTI and how to apply?
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RTI means Right to Information , i.e. Right to Information . The Right to Information Act is an Act passed by the Parliament of India. Its purpose is to curb the increasing corruption in the country and to reach all types of information related to government work to the general public. This act enhances transparency between the government and the public. You can easily get information about any department of the government and its related work through online website sitting at home. 

You can find out with the help of RTI how much money is being spent in which department of the government or how much money is going in the pocket of an officer or politician. This law gives the Right to Information or Right to Information to every citizen of India . Under this, you can ask for any kind of information from the government, take a copy of it, check government works and documents and take samples of the substances of government work.

Importance of Right to Information

Right to Information is a part of the Fundamental Rights under Article 19(1) of the Constitution. According to Article 19(1), every citizen has the right to speak and to express his views. Describing the right to information as a part of fundamental rights , the Supreme Court had laid down three principles given below.

(i) At the beginning of the year 1976, in the case of Raj Narayan and the Government of Uttar Pradesh, the Supreme Court said that until people do not know something, they cannot speak or express, so everyone should have the right to know. Therefore , the RTI Act was included in Article 19 .

(ii) At the same time, the Supreme Court said that India is a democracy, where the people are the masters. Therefore, the owners have the right to know how the government formed for their service is functioning

(iii) The court also said that every citizen of the country pays tax. Even if a beggar in the street buys something, he pays tax in the form of sales tax and excise duty. Therefore every citizen has the right to know  where their money is being spent. 

Why is the Act necessary for RTI despite being a fundamental right?

The Right to Information Act is very important. This is because if you go to any government department and say there that RTI is my fundamental right and I am the owner as a citizen of the country. So please show me all your files, it won’t show you. Rather, there is every possibility that he will throw you out of his office. So we need a machinery or process so that we can exercise these rights. 

The Right to Information Act 2005, which came into effect on 13 October 2005 , provides us with this machinery. Therefore the Right to Information (RTI) Act does not give us any new rights. It only determines the process, such as where to apply for information, how to apply and how much is the fee etc.

When did the RTI Act came into force?

The Right to Information (RTI) Act was implemented on 13 October 2005. Earlier, 9 state governments of the country had passed the State Act. These states included Jammu and Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Assam, Maharashtra, Goa, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Delhi.

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RIGHTS GIVEN UNDER THE RIGHT TO INFORMATION ACT, 2005

Under the Right to Information Act 2005, the following rights have been given to every citizen of the country.

  • You can ask any question or ask for information from the government.
  • You can ask for a copy of any government document.
  • Can check any official document.
  • Can supervise any government business.
  • Samples can be taken of the material of any government work.

Who comes under the purview of RTI?

RTI is available in all the states and union territories of India . All bodies which are constituted under the constitution or any statute or any government notification or all bodies including NGOs which are owned, controlled and substantially financed by the government, come under the purview of Central RTI.

Do private bodies come under the purview of RTI?

All private entities that are owned and controlled by the government and which are substantially financed by the government are directly covered under RTI. Others are covered indirectly, such as if a government department can obtain information from a private body under any other Act, similarly common citizens can also get information from that body under the RTI Act through a government department. could.

How to file RTI?

How to file RTI?
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There are two ways to file RTI, one is (i) online application process and second (ii) offline application process.

How to file RTI online?

Follow the steps given below to file RTI online:

1. First of all visit the official website of RTI https://rtionline.up.gov.in/ .

2. After visiting, you will see the home page like the image shown below.

3. Click on the ‘Apply’ tab given on the homepage .

4. Now a page will open in front of you in which guidelines will be given.

5. After reading this guide line, tick the box “I have read and understood the above guidelines” and submit.

6. Now another page will open in front of you. Enter your details in English language, such as your e-mail ID and your phone number to receive SMS.

7. Now fill the given captcha code in the box next to ‘Enter Captcha Code’ and submit.

8. Now the RTI application page will open in front of you. Here enter your complete details in English.

9. It is mandatory to fill the columns with star ( * ) symbol.

10. You can write only 500 words (3000 characters) in the box provided for applying for RTI request . If your application contains more than 500 words then upload the PDF file of the application in the option given below.

11. Finally enter the captcha code and submit.

Keep these things in mind while applying RTI

  • If you are not a BPL card holder, then you will have to pay Rs 10 as a fee. The application process is absolutely free for BPL card holders.
  • For this, the applicant will have to provide the details of the BPL card, such as BPL card number, year of issue, issuing authority.
  • Apart from this, if there is any other document related to the application, then you can also upload it in the form of PDF.

How to file RTI offline?

  1. First of all, find out the department for which you want to file RTI .
  2. Now where the application is being made, apply in writing or electronically in Hindi, English or the official language of the region along with the prescribed fee. You can also take the help of Public Information Officer to write the application.
  3. The application should be addressed to the concerned State or Central Public Information Officer.
  4. The question in the application made by you should be clear and detailed along with your personal details like name, address, contact number etc.
  5. If you are a BPL card holder, you can apply for free by showing the relevant documents. For all others, the application fee of Rs 10 has been fixed.
  6. The application can be submitted through e-mail at the office or in person.
  7. A receipt will be given to you after the acceptance of the application. Keep the copy of this receipt and application safe with you.
  8. After the receipt of the application, it is mandatory for the Central Public Officer to respond within 30 days, and if the information sought threatens the life and liberty of any person, then the time limit is 48 hours.

Rules for applying RTI

Following are the essential requirements for filling the application form under RTI Act.

  • Applicant must be a citizen of India.
  • The question asked in the application should be clear and detailed.
  • The application should be accompanied by proof of payment of the application fee.
  • The applicant’s address should be available for sending the reply to the application.
  • No personal information is required to be given or sought by the Public Information Officer (PIO) except the personal details required to contact the applicant.
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How to check RTI application status?

Follow the steps given below to check RTI application status:

1. Visit the official website of RTI and click on ‘View Status’

2. Now a page will open in front of you, here enter your registration number in the first box.

3. Enter your e-mail address in the second box.

4. Now fill the captcha code and click on submit.

5. You will see the status of your application and the action taken in your application.

Advantages of RTI – Advantages of RTI in Hindi

Ever since the Right to Information came into force, people have benefited a lot from it. Due to this the interests of the general public are being protected. Some of the benefits of Right to Information are as follows:

  • Common citizens can get information related to the use of the upcoming budget for their basic needs like water, electricity and roads. People can take information or accounts from the institute and know how much budget was passed for which work and how much was used.
  • With the help of this law, any person can make a complaint against corruption .
  • With the help of this law, citizens can also get information related to their personal work, can ask for permanent pension information, information related to Aadhar card and PAN card and information related to Provident Fund.
  • Through this scheme, we can get all the information of any fact from the government institution. But we cannot use it to know the opinion of a government institution.
  • Under this act all government institutions, banks, schools, colleges, hospitals, electricity departments, telecom departments, railway departments, state governments, post offices, etc.
  • The biggest thing about the RTI Act, it protects all the rights of the general public and the public’s trust in the government is maintained by getting information.

Major Provisions of Right to Information Act

  • Under the Right to Information Act, any Indian citizen can get any kind of information from any government or public authority. There is a provision to provide the information sought under this Act within 30 days from the date of application.
  • Information related to defence, national security and personal information cannot be given under the Right to Information Act.
  • In this Act, constitutional bodies like Prime Minister, President, Vice President, Parliament and State Legislature including Supreme Court, High Court and Election Commission and their related posts have also been included in the purview of RTI Act.
  • In this act, all public authorities have been asked to keep their documents safe in the computer for the protection.
  • Under the RTI Act , a provision has been made for the formation of a Central Information Commission at the central level consisting of a Chief Information Commissioner and a team of maximum 10 Information Commissioners. In the states also, there is a provision for the formation of State Information Commission on the same basis.

Some important things related to the Right to Information Act 

  1. Right to Information (RTI) is part of our Fundamental Rights, so if the Public Information Officer refuses to accept the application, does not respond within the stipulated time frame or gives false or misleading information, then a fine of Rs 250 per day will be imposed. Accordingly, a fine of up to 25000 can be deducted from his salary.
  2. Whenever you ask for information, the Public Information Officer does not have the right to ask the reason for seeking information.
  3. As an application fee, Rs 10 has been kept for people coming above the poverty line. In some states it can be even more.
  4. You can directly complain to the Information Commission related to the misbehavior of the Public Information Officer.
  5. If you demand a copy of the documents along with the information, then you will have to pay a fee of Rs 2 per page for it. In some states this fee can be even higher.
  6. If the information sought by you goes to the wrong department, then it is the duty of the information officer of that department to send it to the right department within 5 days. In such a situation, the time limit will be 35 days instead of 30.
  7. If you leave the application form incomplete in any respect, your application may get cancelled. Apart from this, if you ask for information about a department which has been kept out of the purview of RTI, then the application will be canceled.
  8. The Public Information Officer can refuse to give such information in respect of matters related to which information cannot be given. Such cases have been mentioned in section 8 . But if the information sought is in the public interest, then the information denied in section 8 can also be given.
  9. If any information cannot be refused on demand of Parliament or Legislative Assembly, then that information cannot be refused even on demand of the general public.
  10. If the Public Information Officer does not provide the information within the stipulated time limit, or refuses to provide the information despite being outside section 8, or you are not satisfied with the information, then you can contact the concerned Public Information Officer within 30 days. First appeal can be made before the superior officer of the I.E. First Appellate Officer.
  11. If you are not satisfied even with the first appeal, then you can make the second appeal within 60 days to the concerned Central or State Information Commission.

FAQs related to RTI

Q. In how many days does RTI reply come?

After the RTI is filed, the Public Information Officer has to reply to the applicant within 30 days.

Q. What to do if information is not received under RTI?

If you do not get the information or are not satisfied, you can file an appeal. If you are not satisfied with the first appeal also you can file second appeal.

Q. What is First Appeal?

If the information given by the information officer is wrong or you are not satisfied with the information or you have not received the reply to the application then you can file first appeal. For this, a tab has been given on the homepage of the official website of RTI named as “First Appeal” .

Q. Which information cannot be given under Right to Information?

Information that relates to any personal information, the disclosure of which does not concern a public activity or public interest, and which causes unnecessary infringement on the privacy of any person, cannot be given under the Right to Information. Apart from this, any such information, if shared which may pose a threat to the security of the nation, cannot be given under the Right to Information.

Q.Information How much application fee has to be paid by the applicant?

On applying for RTI, Rs 10 has to be paid as application fee. This fee may be higher in any state. Whereas the application process is available free of cost for BPL card holders.

Conclusion

I hope you must have liked my article “What is RTI and how to apply” . I have tried my best to bring all the information related to the Right to Information Act to you so that you do not need to go to any other website regarding this subject.

If you liked this information or got to learn something new, then please share it on other social media networks . 

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