An NGO has moved the Supreme Court challenging the validity of the rules framed by the Allahabad High Court for disclosing information under the Right to Information Act.
The PIL,filed by Common Cause,submitted that the rules are in violation of the RTI Act as they prescribe exorbitant charges for revealing information under the transparency Act.
If the rules drafted by the Allahabad High Court are allowed to stand,it would negate the citizens right to information under the RTI Act and frustrate the implementation of the latter. The RTI Act is a reflection of the will of the citizens of India that has been codified by Parliament,and accepting rules repugnant to the provisions and object of the Act would render the RTI Act redundant, the petition said.
It said the rule of charging Rs 500 for each information is against the Act which prescribes for reasonable fee to be charged from information seekers.
It also challenged the rule of charging Rs 15 per page of information to be supplied. Transparency and accountability in the functioning of the public authorities and institutions have been recognised as a sine qua non of democracy. Putting undue and prohibitive restrictions on this right,especially by virtue of rules which bear no nexus with the object of the Act,amounts to negating the idea of a society, the NGO said.
It said repeated recommendations by Central Information Commission to modify its RTI rules was ignored by the High Court.