Monday, August 28, 2017

[rti_india] Re: [ଓଡ଼ିଶା ସୂଚନା ଅଧିକାର ଅଭିଯାନ] Who is RTI Activist?


Dear Friends, 
With All Due respect to Every other Citizen of this great Country , i beg to differ on Calling the Entire Eligible Citizens of this Country who "USE" their Right to Information as "activists ", Since all of us have this Right .
In My View this is an Misnomer Coined by both Print And Electronic Media , Only Because they Just Could not Find a Catchy Word .
The Coinage of this word has been attributed to an American Researcher, However the Usage of Freedom Of Information in US of A & In India Differs Completely.
The First example to this is an Great Team of Fellow citizens in Maharashtra, More So In & around "PUNE " city who were led by the Great Journalist, Know by his Popular Name as Sri Prakash Kardaley , former Chief Editor of The indian Express , He Is now Not with us , But All through the Few Years he Was in this Activity , He Never ONCE made an RTI Request but used to Define, elaborate ,Deduce Every Pros& Cons of RTI . He was in Other words an encyclopedia of RTI and all its inherent , Internal , external issues . 
Myself Being also one who was Introduced to this Subject and Having Established an "RTI STUDY CENTER", A Recognised Resource Person also do not Make "RTI Request " . My requests Stopped when the National Act was Passed in 2005 .
People who just Start Making RTI Requests on being Told or Informed to do so without any Idea of what May Happen when they Do not get their Sought Information or Get Only Partial Information cannot be Called or Named Activists .
Myself in this sphere over these 12 long years of RTI Act 2005 , have Ensured that the Government / information Commission  Take such Steps , Issue such Orders which Ensure Large Public benefit to others and May be through them i also may be Benefited a little Bit like 
1. Continuously Studying and Follow up on Section 4.1.  b Declarations are Made by Public Authorities without Using RTI requests 
2. Ensure that the Police Department issue A Long Lasting and High Bearing Circular that Police Dept has no Authority Nor have any Right to Call an RTI Requester to Police Station , Nor send a police officer Just to deliver the Information Sought ( You can Understand the Implication of this) 
3. ensure that the Government issue a Circular to effect that they Issue or provide Documents only Normal Office practice of True Copy and Not to Qualify it as "issued under RTI" or such other similar Fashions 
4. Ensure that the First Fees is ₹ 10/- only (there is a Great History behind this and even Limit/restrict Further fees to ₹2/- only  , T Suffice it state that Karnataka was the First State to Constitute and Establish an Information Commission on 30th June 2005 even before all Sections of RTI were Brought into Force being 12th October 2005 
5. The First Fees Paid Only in our state is "INITIAL" fees and not application fees  which ensure Savings both to the Citizen as also exchequer of at least ₹25/- each for just one or two pages of Supply of Documents 
6. Ensured that a SOP is made on First Appeal hearing process immediately after the Supreme court Delivered the Manipur Information Commission Vs. Manipur Government Case in the matter of the Scope of Info Comms in Complaints under Section 18
I Most humbly Submit that there are only "USERS" of RTI in our Country without any Dearth and Classify citizens into three (3) different and Distinct Categories and Only that they may Play roles at certain definite Situations as 

ACTIVIST ----------->        ------------>
                 <----------  user   <----------- BENEFICIARY 
Let us look and re-look  the role of Citizens in RTI usage in a very deep prospective 
Finally to add Salt & pepper , In Bengaluru People who Make Certain Set of RTI Queries to Certain Public Authorities & PIOs only for Pecuniary Benefits and further a given limited cause Contrary to the Great Intended Cause of RTI are very Easily named "RTI ACTIVISTS" ( I think i need not expand or write what exactly is this definition) In Fact when an Professor of Journalism from an american University Recently had a Day long Discussion on Impact or Status of RTI india as a study , I conveyed my analysis of this and it was Readily accepted as very Plausible way to indicate the essence of RTI  and its perculation.
i am very sorry and i beg to differ as is Different and distinct in our Country and Statistics on other inherent things may still reveal Contrary positions.
Thanks for Invoked my Response and Given me my opportunity to Express   my thoughts which i firmly believe 
N vikramsimha , KRIA Katte , #12 Sumeru Sir M N Krishna Rao Road , Basvangudi < Bangalore 560004.

On Saturday, 26 August 2017 10:52 PM, Pradip Pradhan <> wrote:

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Who is RTI Activist?
Dear friends

After implementation  of Right to Information Act in 2005,  many  Social Activists, volunteers  and Anti-corruption crusaders  are  seen using RTI  to expose  corruption and maladministration  as well as to enforce transparency  in the administration.  The people who are using RTI extensively  and  carrying out campaign for effective implementation of RTI Act  in the  country are called as RTI Activists.

RTI Activism is debated and discussed much in public domain that too in mass media across the country.  Commitment of RTI  Activists to expose mega corruption and irregularities and maladministration in Govt.   has been widely acclaimed   by  different of section of  people across the country. Within short span of 12  years of implementation of RTI Act, more than 60  RTI Activists have been killed and hundreds of activists assaulted and false case and defamation case filed against them. Many of them are also languishing in jail. Such scenario has not taken place in any campaign on any law  in the country.
RTI Activist is defined as  someone who  seeks   varies of information  and  makes  it  available to the people  and  highlight same through mass media. They are people who are driven by passion and commitment and keen to share information more widely.  They not only disseminate information but daringly and vigorously purse the matter  to reach at logical end. With the information , they try their best  to fight out the issues relating to  the system by  organising public demonstration, filling cases  in courts  and raising the issues  through policymakers  in  appropriate forum, They are the people who see the need for change and improvement on a large scale inside the Government. RTI activism is not about how you look or the clothes you wear: the sine qua non of activism is doing. We feel it is more important to look at the actions being undertaken rather than how individuals define themselves.

Information Scientist Anthony Molaro coined the term 'Information Activist' in 2009 as  "An information activist is a vigorous advocate of knowledge gained through study, communication, research or instruction"
  For some Activism comes naturally, while for others, it's something that comes as a result of problems they see or upon learning about something they passionately believe needs to change. Whatever the reason for wanting to become an RTI activist, the Activist pursue their cause relentlessly no matter their age, their means, or their background.  Their victimisation by the  Powerful and  History-sheeters  is obvious. But  it has not died out  their passion and vigour.  That is the beauty of an RTI Activist.
Pradip Pradhan
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