Tuesday, February 9, 2010

[rti_india] RTI Forum



On Sunday (07/02/2010) IRDS Lucknow in support with Manjunath Trust organized a Meeting at IIM Lucknow to remember Sri Satish Shetty, the late RTI activist from Pune.  Sri Shetty, who was born in an ordinary family in Lonavla, Mumbai did his matriculation from Bal Vikas Vidyalaya but did not pursue his higher studies as he was not really interested in that kind of bookish knowledge. He used the Right to Information Act many a times to expose corruption and to bring forth truth. Some of his important works included irregularities in land acquisition by the Sable-Waghire Company and IRB Infrastructure Developer in the IRB land scam case, Vaishali Marriage Hall case, Ration Card Scam and exposure of illegal Bungalow construction by a former president of the Talegaon Dabhade Municipal Council.
In the meeting, organized many RTI activists and students of IIM Lucknow made their participation. The meeting paid homage to Sri Shety. Serious objections were raised about the fact that Sri Shetty was not provided security by the local police despite his having specially asked for it. That too when it was well-known that he was on target of many such persons whom he had exposed. Those present in the meeting were really perturbed by this fact that life of a person like Sri Shetty got lost  because of this apathy. Concerns were also raised about the progress in the investigation so far. While 5 accused are said to have been arrested, yet as per Sri  Sandip's version many of the real culprits seem to remain untouched so far. It was hoped that with the High Court's persistent interference, truth might come out soon.
Of those present in the meeting IPS officer Amitabh Thakur  spoke about Sri Shetty  and his great contributions.  Utkarsh Kumar Sinha from CCS implored the condition of the RTI activists in Lucknow. Vishal Gupta, FPM student, IIM Lucknow spoke about Sri Manjunath, his contributions and his murder case. He also spoke about the works done by the Manjunath trust so far. Rajhans Mishra from IIM Lucknow spoke about the need to have a state-wide awareness about RTI and its various facets.  Mahendra Kumar from Project Vijay narrated many of his personal experiences and hardships in using RTI. Advocate Jagnarain Sharma severely criticized the fact that the main accused of this heinous murder was an advocate and said that it is people like these who give a bad name to the entire profession. Amit Kumar Pandey from Lucknow University also paid his respect by saying that both Sri Shetty and Sri Manjunath belonged to the same highest category of persons who sacrificed their life for a great cause.  RTI activist Akhilesh Saxena said that there was an immediate need to form some kind of association for aiding and assisting all RTI activists in their proper functioning. Hence a decision was taken to form a "RTI Forum" where all the RTI activists shall be brought together.
As a result of this, "National RTI Forum" for all the RTI activists to be brought together has been created. A yahoo group National RTI Forum" has also been created with subscription email- nationalrtiforum-subscribe@yahoogroups.com and message email- nationalrtiforum@yahoogroups.com. This RTI Forum shall try to act as a nodal body for all the RTI activists and activities. It shall look into all the matters related with RTI activists in consideration, including their training, guidance, support and security related aspects. A Facebook group by the name of National RTI Forum has also been created. All of you are sincerely requested to join these groups so that all of us join hands and act together in aiding and assisting each other.

Amitabh Thakur, IIM Lucknow # 94155-34526
Dr Nutan Thakur, IRDS Lucknow # 94155-34525
Utkarsh Kumar Sinha, CCS Lucknow # 99357-36877
Vishal Gupta, IIM Lucknow # 94530-12815



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