Sunday, September 8, 2013

[HumJanenge] RTI Amendment Bill 2013 - Defend the People's Right to Know, Start Talking to MPs Now

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Venkatesh Nayak <>
Date: Sun, 8 Sep 2013 13:46:04 +0530
Subject: RTI Amendment Bill 2013 - Defend the People's Right to Know,
Start Talking to MPs Now

Dear all,

I am writing to thank all of you who took the trouble of reading up our
email alerts on the Right to Information (Amendment) Bill, 2013 and signed
the online petition to the Speaker, Lok Sabha demanding that the Bill be
referred to a Parliamentary Standing Committee for wider public
consultation. We crossed 20,700 within a fortnight.

Thanks to your collective efforts, the Bill has indeed been referred to the
Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and
Justice chaired by Mr. Shantharam Naik. The list of other 29 members along
with details of their State, constituency, telephone numbers (wherever
available) and email addresses (wherever available) is attached. There are
two vacancies on the Committee. This Committee is serviced by the Rajya
Sabha Secretariat. The public advertisement seeking people's comments on
the RTI Amendment Bill is not out yet. It may be published next week or

This is not the time to sit back and relax. There is no need to wait for
the public advertisement to start the conversation with the members of the
Committee. You have their mobile phone nos. and email addresses at your
disposal now. Every member has at least one of these means of
communication, if not both. Many have both mobile phones and email ids. So
please start sending them smses, tweets or emails explaining why you think
political parties must become transparent about their functioning and
finances. Those of you who think political parties must not be brought
under the RTI Act, this is your opportunity to tell the MPs why you think
so. In a democracy all views must be voiced and heard before the law is
made on the basis of public debate and consensus. Fence sitters, please
make up your mind which way you want to go. So instead of shouting at the
last moment, it is important to keep up the pressure right now. Please send
a copy of your smses, emails or tweets sent to MPs to the mobile phone no.
and email id given below: and 9871050555.

If you have the resources it is a very good idea to organise a public event
in your city/town/village, invite your local MP and have a public debate on
the RTI (Amendment Bill) at a date and time that is convenient for your MP
and the local people. After attending the meeting he/she can carry the
summary of public opinion on this important issue to his/her party bosses
which will inevitably reach the members of the Parliamentary Committee. If
your MP refuses to participate in the debate despite repeated requests,
please do the following:

1) Publicise the refusal/silence widely through the media (English and
regional language media)

2) Send us an email with proof of refusal. It is enough if you copy the
emails invites and reminders to your MP to the email id given above. If the
debate does not happen despite your efforts for more than a month, that is
evidence enough of the fact that you tried but the MP failed to meet your

*Please circulate this email alert as widely as possible. I will keep you
updated on future developments.*


Thanking you,
Yours sincerely,
Venkatesh Nayak
*Access to Information Programme*
*Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative*
*B-117, 1st Floor, Sarvodaya Enclave*
*New Delhi- 110 017*
*Tel: +91-11-43180201/ 9871050555*
*Fax: +91-11-26864688*

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