RTI activists file Intervention Petition in the Apex Court in Namit Sharma review case
In the matter of review petition pending before the Supreme Court in the case of Union of India Vs Namit Sharma, the noted RTI activists Aruna Roy and Shailesh Gandhi have filed their intervention petition. In their petition to the Supreme Court seeking to quash the controversial provisions for selecting Chief Information Commissioners, it has been submitted that the direction that the Commission should work in benches where one of the Commissioners is a judicial member would create several problems that have the potential of defeating the objective of the Act itself.
It has been claimed in the petition that the order in the case of Union of India Vs Namit Sharma directing that the Chief Information Commissioners should have judicial background would harm the Right to Information (RTI) Act and make it redundant. The Apex Court judgment has been criticised for judicial overreach which has been claimed to eventually harm freedom of speech and democracy in the country.
It has been argued in the petition that the Information Commission is not a court but is merely a tribunal to seek ‘information’ and not ‘justice’. The Information Commissions are not ‘judicial tribunals’ since they are not administering justice, but are only providing access to information to make administration transparent. The work being done by the Information Commissioners (ICs) do not require them to be judicially and legally trained, but only expects that they be persons of intelligence, common sense and integrity. Please refer to the article put on the site previously at http://www.rtifoundationofindia.com/critique-supreme-court-judgment-regarding-appointm-2297
Ms. Aruna Roy is a member of the National Advisory Council (NAC) and had helped in drafting the RTI Act. Mr. Shailesh Gandhi, is a noted RTI activist and also the former Information Commissioner at the Central Information Commission.