ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Power to the People

The Right to Information (RTI) Act of 2005 is a progressive and formidable legislation that has the potential to change the nature of governance in India. The act itself is partly the outcome of nine years of struggle and campaigning by various civil society groups, and partly of the relentless efforts of the National Advisory Council. The fact that India has chosen to push for greater transparency in an age when many countries are rolling back the culture of openness, using security concerns as an excuse, demonstrates the maturity of our democracy. The UPA government fortunately made modifications to the RTI Bill introduced in Parliament in December 2004, which though having progressive features suffered from a major shortcoming in that its provisions would apply only to information held by the central government (EPW, January 22, 2005). Following strong protests from civil society groups, who accused the UPA government of violating the Common Minimum Programme that promised to make the RTI Bill...

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