RTI activists have filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court, “for securing the fundamental right of citizens to access information from public authorities.”
As per the March 2018 ‘Report Card on the Performance of Information Commissions in India’ – eight information commissions had a waiting time of more than one year for an appeal/complaint to be heard, which was calculated on the basis of the number of appeals and complaints pending as of 31 October 2017 and the monthly disposal rate. Also, several information commissions are functioning without a Chief Information Commissioner thereby undermining the autonomy of the Commission and hampering its smooth functioning.
As per the petition, currently there are four vacancies in the Central Information Commission, even though more than 23,500 appeals and complaints are pending. So, how many chairs of information commissioners across the country are still vacant?
The petitioners have prayed for immediate steps to fill up the vacancies by the Indian government for Central Information Commissioners and by the specific States, which have vacancies. The case will come up for hearing.