CIC issues notices to six political parties for non-implementation of RTI Act
The Central Information Commission (CIC) had held in its June, 2013 order that six political parties viz. Congress, Bharatiya Janata Party, Nationalist Congress Party, Communist Party of India (Marxist), Communist Party of India and Bahujan Samaj Party fall under the definition of public authority as mentioned in Section 2(h) “public authority” means any authority or body or institution of self-government established or constituted (a) by or under the Constitution; (b) by any other law made by Parliament; (c) by any other law made by State Legislature; (d) by notification issued or order made by the appropriate Government, and includes any- (i) body owned, controlled or substantially financed; (ii) non-Government organization substantially financed, directly or indirectly by funds provided by the appropriate Government; of the Right to Information (RTI) Act because they have been substantially financed by the government.
The commission had given six weeks time to the parties to appoint Central Public Information Officers and the Appellate Authorities at their headquarters and another four weeks time to respond to RTI queries and to comply with the mandatory disclosure clause of the transparency act. However, as the political parties are yet to act upon the CIC order, a representation was presented before the CIC seeking compliance of the earlier order by the political parties.
The CIC has now issued notices to the INC/AICC, the BJP, the CPI (M), the CPI, the NCP and the BSP asking them to present before it the details of actions taken by the parties to implement the CIC order within four weeks.