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What are the rights provided under Right to Information Act, 2005?

What do you mean by ‘right to information’?

Section 2(f) of the Right to information Act, 2005 defines the word ‘information’ which means that it may be in any material form such as records, documents, memos, e-mails, opinions, advices, press releases, circulars, orders, logbooks, contracts, reports, papers, samples, models, data material held in any electronic form and information relating to any private body which can be accessed by a public authority under any other law for the time being in force; In turn the Act defined the word “records” under Section 2(i) includes any document, manuscript and file; any microfilm, microfiche and facsimile copy of a document; any reproduction of image or images embodied in such microfilm (whether enlarged or not); and any other material produced by a computer or any other device;

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Section 2 (j) of the Act states that information held by the public authority and kept the same under his control and every public has the right to access the same which is called the Right to information, and such right also includes the following:
(i) inspection of work, documents, records;
(ii) taking notes, extracts or certified copies of documents or records;
(iii) taking certified samples of material;
(iv) obtaining information in the form of diskettes, floppies, tapes, video cassettes or in any other electronic mode or through printouts where such information is stored in a computer or in any other device;

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Right to Information Act laid down in order to promote transparency and accountability of public authority in rendering its service. The Supreme Court held that right to know and be informed would make the right to free speech and expression a complete right. Besides, it stated that right to information is the global trend that can be seen in every democratic country and have the legislation substantiating this right for giving assurance to the citizens, which considers as a part of the efforts and attempts to promote transparency and accountability in the public authority and to make the public to participate in decision-making process. The Supreme Court in the case of The State of Uttar Pradesh v. Raj Narain and Ors. (AIR 1975 SC S65) stated that “people of this country have a right to know every public act, every thing that is done in a public way by their public functionaries. They are entitled to know the particulars of every public transaction in all its hearing.

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Adv. Anitha Gutti

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