1A citizen has a right to seek such information from a public authority which is held by the public authority or which is held under its control. This right includes
- Inspection of work, documents, and records
- Taking notes
- Extracts or certified copies of documents or records
- Taking certified samples of material held by the public authority or held under the control of the public authority.
2According to the Act the information which cannot be denied to the Parliament or a State Legislature, shall not be denied to any person.
3A citizen has a right to obtain information from a public authority in the form of
- video cassettes, in any other electronic mode
- or through printouts provided such information is already stored on a computer or in any other device.
4The Act gives the right to information only to the citizens of India. It does not make provision for giving information to
- Companies etc. which are legal entities/persons, but not citizens
5If the information is sought in the form of a photocopy; it shall be given in that form. The information shall be provided in the form as requested by the applicant, subject to the conditions in the Act. It does not mean that the PIO shall re-shape the information.
6Information Seekers can request the Public Information Officers (PIO) to cull information from some document(s) and give such extracted information to them
7The following types of information are exempted and there would be no obligation, even if the information goes beyond 20 years.
- Information, disclosure of which would affect the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security, strategic, scientific or economic interest of the State, relation with foreign state or lead to incitement of an offence;
- Information, the disclosure of which would cause a breach of privilege of Parliament or State Legislature; or
- Cabinet papers including
- records of deliberations of the Council of Ministers,
- Secretaries and
- other Officers subject to the conditions given in proviso to clause (i) of sub-section(1) of Section 8 of the Act.
8 Organizations which are exempted from the RTI act :
- Intelligence Bureau, Ministry of Home Affairs
- Directorate of Revenue Intelligence, Ministry of Finance
- Central Economic Intelligence Bureau, Ministry of Finance
- Directorate of Enforcement, Ministry of Finance
- Narcotics Control Bureau
- Aviation Research Centre
- Special Frontier Force
- Border Security Force, Ministry of Home Affairs
- Central Reserve Police Force, Ministry of Home Affairs
- Indo-Tibetan Border Police, Ministry of Home Affairs
- Central Industrial Security Force, Ministry of Home Affairs
- National Security Guard, Ministry of Home Affairs
- Research & Analysis Wing of The Cabinet Secretariat
- Assam Rifles, Ministry of Home Affairs
- Sashastra Seema Bal, Ministry of Home Affairs
- Special Protection Group
- Defence Research and Development Organisation, Ministry of Defence
- Border Road Development Organisation
- Financial Intelligence Unit, India
- Directorate General Income Tax (Investigation)
- National Technical Research Organisation
- National Security Council Secretariat
These organisations are exempted under RTI Act, but cases related to corruption and Human Rights Violation are not exempted.
9Definition of different terms in RTI act.
i. Public Authority : A “public authority” is any authority or body or institution of self-government established or constituted by or under the Constitution; or by any other law made by the Parliament or a State Legislature; or
- by notification issued or order made by the Central Government or a State Government.
- The bodies owned, controlled or substantially financed by the Central Government or a State Government are also public authorities.
- Non-Government organisations which receive funds by the Central Government or a State Government also fall within the definition of public authority.
ii. Public Information Officer : Every government office has designated some of its officers as Public Information Officers. They are responsible for providing the information to the person who seeks information under the RTI Act.
iii. First Appeal : The first appeal is addressed to First Appellate Authority who is senior in rank to the CPIO/PIO in the same office. The applicant can write to First Appellate Authority if they do not receive any information from the PIO in 30 days or
they are not satisfied with the information provided by the PIO
iv. Second Appeal : The second appeal lies with the Central Information Commission. The applicant files a second appeal if s/he did not receive a satisfactory reply even after the first appeal.