New Delhi: The government is creating a system so transparent that the need to file RTI applications itself is reduced, said Home Minister Amit Shah on October 12.
“Under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the government is committed to creating a system where there is enough suo moto declaration of information that the need to file RTI applications itself is reduced,” said Shah while presiding over the 14th Annual convention of the Central Information Commission as the Chief Guest.
He added, “PM Modi is determined to create a system where information was given freely, so that people would not need to resort to RTI. The government would further ease the process of RTI to take justice and accountability to the last mile.”
Dubbing transparency and accountability as the twin pillars of Good Governance, Shah said, “Awareness regarding transparency should not be limited to quasi-judicial proceedings and disposal of cases but govt servants should instead actively reach out to people to make them aware of the proactive steps taken by government to increase transparency, accountability and efficiency in the government.”
He added, “The success of a transparent government lies not in an increase in the number of RTI applications but in the fact that RTI applications reduce in spite of the RTI process being completely accessible to people.”
“RTI would go a long way in the creation of a welfare state envisaged by the makers of our Constitution, and New India as envisioned by PM Modi,” Shah said and advised the officers to increase the sense of responsibility in people, along with awareness about RTI, stating, “It should not be misused or used for personal enmity or vendetta.”
Noting that there has been very little misuse of RTI, Shah said, “This shows the maturity of our democracy.” He presented the example of Kedarnath all weather road as a successful attempt to harness technology to increase transparency in government projects.
Meanwhile, speaking on the occasion, MoS PMO Jitendra Singh said, “Under PM Modi, the government had further strengthened the cause of transparency and accountability by creating an online portal for RTI, which did not previously exist.”
He added, “Proactive increase in transparency in the last five years has led to a reduction in the need for RTI. In 2019 alone, 12 lakh RTI related grievances had been redressed successfully and the government had taken several steps to increase awareness about RTI but cautioned that the law should not be misused.”
Chief Information Commissioner Sudhir Bhargava remarked the annual convention as an opportunity to reflect and introspect on the implementation of RTI Act and the success achieved in furthering our shared democratic values.