Right to Information

Now, 'voluntary' takedowns?

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |24/06/2018

 Giving a new spin to self-censorship, several   prominent news outlets  took down their published articles on the post-demonetization bank deposits in an Ahmedabased-based bank in which BJP President Amit Shah is director. The IANS news agency, which broke the story, however says that it is based on information obtained through RTI and they will..

 

Loksatta exposes land grab by babus and judges

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |06/12/2017

Loksatta, the Marathi daily of the Express Group, used RTI to publish a major investigation on Dec 3  titled ‘ Civil Servants Aawas Yojana’, on land grab in prime locations in Mumbai by bureaucrats and judges. It named them and carried pictures of the housing colonies concerned, in Churchgate, Andheri,..

 

When the judiciary protected its own right to privacy

BY VENKATESH NAYAK| IN PRIVACY |28/07/2017

On at least three occasions, the Constitutional Courts protected the right to privacy of judges and the judiciary.

 

Using RTI in journalism: a lesson in tenacity

IN BOOKS |05/07/2017

Despite the RTI Act, for the government anti-transparency is a statement of belief and hiding information and passing the buck a favorite diversionary activity,

 

Murder of RTI activist not news

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |11/04/2017

The killing of an RTI activist in Pune late on Sunday night by hitting him with concrete blocks was not news on Tuesday in any paper except the Indian Express. And the Express too did not think it was front page news. The paper had prominent coverage of the story only on page..

 

Pro-active editor

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |05/01/2017

This Frontline story just published, on the PMO’s monitoring of the turf battles between former Delhi LG Najeeb Jung and Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal, is based on multiple RTI applications.  It documents the pro-active role of Hindustan Times executive editor Shishir Gupta in drawing attention of the PMO  to Kejriwal’s violations, via an email whose..

 

When ‘news’ is 3 months old

BY MUHAMMED SABITH| IN REGIONAL MEDIA |25/08/2016

The Kerala media reported a May ruling by the Central Information Commission as ‘news’ in August. Why?

 

 

Kerala rejects RTI ruling

BY MUHAMMED SABITH| IN LAW AND POLICY |16/08/2016

The Kerala government ups the ante by going to court over its refusal to disclose details of cabinet meetings under RTI, copying its predecessor’s stand.

 

Rajasthan removes RTI from textbooks

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |18/05/2016

The Hindu reports that the BJP regime in Rajasthan has deleted the RTI movement from the class 8 social science textbook despite the key role played by marginalised villagers in this  state in  bringing in this legislation. The MKSS, a Rajasthan-based NGO, had initiated the struggle for this legislation here.  

 

Kerala backtracks on RTI restrictions

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |23/03/2016

Apropos our earlier brief on the Kerala government order restricting information which could be given under RTI on vigilance probes, the latest is that the order has been withdrawn after the Opposition created a ruckus over it. The Hindu reports that the office order issued by the Vigilance and Anti..

 

Convenient restrictions

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |20/03/2016

The Kerala  government has imposed restrictions on providing information on vigilance probes against ministers, MLAs, MPs and all-India service officials under the RTI Act. The Indian Express reported that according to a government notification issued in January  the T-Branch (Top Secret Section) of the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau has been..

 

The BJP government’s preferred icon

BY SAI VINOD| IN SPECIAL REPORTS |04/02/2016

Sardar Patel is energetically memorialized by this government, Ambedkar embraced, and Nehru snubbed,

 

Will media now pursue names of big defaulters?

BY PRANATI B. MEHRA| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |09/01/2016

A Supreme Court ruling will finally force banks to reveal who is defaulting on loans. Public interest will trump secrecy if reporters persist with RTIs,

 

RTI: Triumphs and Infirmities

BY NANDITA JHA| IN SPECIAL REPORTS |31/10/2015

The RTI Decade: Part III---RTI is proving to be a powerful tool for exposing wrongdoing but the backlog of applications and a gradual watering down of some of its provisions are weak areas. 

 

Are one per cent of Indians using RTI?

BY HOOT| IN SPECIAL REPORTS |29/10/2015

A decade of RTI, Part II---How many Indians are using their right to information? Studies suggest that the figure of users has yet to cross one per cent of the population in a given year, but there could be substantial under-reporting.

 

Blood on the anniversary

BY NANDITA JHA| IN SPECIAL REPORTS |21/10/2015

The RTI decade—I. The first of a three-part series on ten years of the Right to Information Act.

 

Between a rock and a hard place

BY GOWHAR GEELANI| IN REGIONAL MEDIA |27/07/2015

To be a journalist in Kashmir is to be prey to violence, suspicion, accused of taking sides and having to think of the consequences of every word.

 

How we fail our RTI heroes

BY MANU MOUDGIL| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |20/07/2015

The attack on Babu Ram Chauhan will be treated as another criminal case notwithstanding that he helped remove encroachments on over 17,000 hectare of irrigated land.

 

Noisy but wrong

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |30/06/2015

 

Anatomy of a journalist's murder

BY NIVEDITA KHANDEKAR| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |27/06/2015

Was Sandeep Kothari a journalist, a blackmailer as the police and the accused claim, or an RTI activist?

 

Bar Council shows its colours

BY PRASHANT REDDY THIKKAVARAPU| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |12/06/2015

Faced with a critical article about a tender, the Bar Council of India has made threatening noises.

 

Right to information vs OSA

IN MEDIA PRACTICE |15/05/2015

How does one make sense of the Official Secrets Act in the Age of the Right to Information?

 

DEITY says 2341 URLs were blocked in 2014; refuses to reveal more

IN MEDIA FREEDOM |09/04/2015

The government's refusal to share information on blocking of online content renders legislative safeguards ineffective.

 

Doval threatens OSA axe

BY PRASHANT REDDY THIKKAVARAPU| IN LAW AND POLICY |16/01/2015

Reporting on national security is as hard as ever, despite the RTI Act.

 

Now protecting RTI from the judiciary?

BY Madabhushi Sridhar| IN MEDIA FREEDOM |08/10/2014

Numerous attempts have been made to amend or weaken the RTI but the latest came from an unusual quarter - the High Court of Madras. But this time too public opinion, through a vibrant media, has stymied it,

 

Controversial cop media darling

BY Jyoti Punwani| IN OPINION |19/02/2014

When Rakesh Maria, took over as the Police Commissioner the media did not rake up any of the major controversies associated with him,

 

Shoddy parliamentary panel report on data privacy

BY Venkatesh Nayak| IN LAW AND POLICY |18/02/2014

The committee's Report submitted to the Lok Sabha on February 12, 2014, examines several issues relating to the use and misuse of cyber space but does them no justice,

 

Updated guide to using RTI

IN MEDIA PRACTICE |03/12/2013

The drafting of the application should be such that it points towards the specific documents required in relation to the information sought.

 

Using RTI: Just 0.3 per cent of the population?

IN MEDIA PRACTICE |14/10/2013

The total number of RTI applications received in Maharashtra outnumbered the total figures put out for the Central Government.

 

 

Amending RTI

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |22/09/2013

The Rajya Sabha Secretariat has advertised in newspapers inviting comments on the Right to Information (Amendment) Bill, which seeks to keep political parties out of the ambit of the RTI Act and also nullify the June 2013 decision of the CIC which declared six national political parties as public authorities...

 

Why RTI will not turn politics public

BY Manu Moudgil| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |17/06/2013

Political parties operate in a space starkly different from government-run agencies which can actually help them escape close scrutiny.

 

RTI--politics may get more public

BY Manu Moudgil| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |29/09/2012

All political parties, except the CPI have refused to provide names of their donors saying they don't come under the purview of the RTI Act.

 

Sanitary freebie

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |08/06/2012

The Hindu on June 8 says  an RTI has revealed that the Delhi press club built toilets with a Rs 1.5 lakh grant from the Maharshtra Chief Minister's Relief Fund in 1998. Asked about it the president of the club told the paper that the amount is modest compared to what  other state..

 

Immune to accountability- II

BY Manu Moudgil| IN BOOKS |03/04/2012

The role of Central Information Commission (CIC) since 2005 has been exemplary. It has dealt successfully with various serious issues like disclosure of information related to mercy petitions, phone tapping and bank details,

 

Immune to accountability- II

BY Manu Moudgil| IN BOOKS |03/04/2012

The role of Central Information Commission (CIC) since 2005 has been exemplary. It has dealt successfully with various serious issues like disclosure of information related to mercy petitions, phone tapping and bank details,

 

Governor Narasimhan sets an example

IN MEDIA PRACTICE |28/02/2012

The selection of candidates for the posts of Information Commissioner is a classic case of political collusion that has been exposed by a vigilant civil society and responsible media in Andhra Pradesh.

 

The RTI petition which forced the Press Council's hand

BY Manu Moudgil| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |16/10/2011

The fact that PCI was clueless about the grounds on which it rejected the application can be gauged from the divergent stances the information officer took.

 

No more censorship in the Press Council

IN CENSORSHIP |10/10/2011

An RTI application to demand that the Press Council of India make public its report on paid news yielded an encouraging result,

 

Paid news report

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |22/09/2011

The full report of the Press Council of India on paid news will now be available on the PCI website thanks to an RTI appeal by journalist Manu Moudgil who pursued his petition up to the CIC. On September 19 information commissioner Shailesh Gandhi ordered the PCI to put up the report on..

 

 

Why Mumbai’s slum demolitions go unreported

BY Jyoti Punwani| IN OPINION |29/05/2011

Though almost half of Mumbai’s population lives in slums, its English print media readers remain unaware of the rapid demolition of thousands of homes. The demolition of the Golibar slum has gone largely unreported, deemed irrelevant to English reader

 

A frenzied media fails to use the RTI Act

BY Manu Moudgil| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |22/05/2011

Social activists have converted the RTI into a powerful tool for those seeking justice, using persistence. They acquire information under the act and give it to the media.

 

 

Express way to using RTI

IN BOOKS |08/05/2011

STUDENT RESEARCH ON THE HOOT: While it is evident that the RTI is a powerful tool in the hands of the media, only a few are making adequate use of it.

 

The websites the government admits to blocking

BY Pranesh Prakash| IN MEDIA FREEDOM |08/04/2011

The Centre for Internet and Society and Medianama did an RTI and obtained some replies from the Department of Information Technology on which websites the government blocked.

 

"The right to privacy is not valid because we are talking about professional con

IN MEDIA FREEDOM |06/12/2010

Senior Supreme Court advocate Prashant Bhushan speaks about the public’s right to know,

 

Publicity happy
IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |30/01/2010
Bihartimes.com reports that the Bihar government spent an amount of  Rs 80 crore on newspaper advertisements and hoardings in the financial year 2006-07, 2007-08 and 2008-09. This figure was given in response to an RTI query by the  Information and Public Relation Department. According to one of the petitioners this..

 

 

Anti-RTI Amendments in Bihar

BY Vishnu Rajgadia| IN REGIONAL MEDIA |24/11/2009

The Nitish Kumar Government amends the RTI act to allow only a single piece of information per application and has restricted the number of free of cost pages.

 

India: Right to information empowers Muslim women

BY Kulsum Mustafa| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |05/11/2009

She believes RTI is essential and the only option to activate an indifferent government machinery and goad it into protecting the interests of the minority community.

 

Not so funny RTI innovations from Jharkhand

BY Vishnu Rajgadia| IN REGIONAL MEDIA |05/09/2009

Recent reports in Jharkhand suggest that information seekers are told to pay substantial sums in the name of the government staff’s salary.

 

Inaccurate reporting

BY Dipu Shaw| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |07/05/2009

In spite of the fact that the reporter was informed about the mistakes by the RTI applicant, the newspaper made no corrections on the subsequent day.

 

 

Out to empower

BY CHANDANA BANERJEE.| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |09/03/2009

A Pune tabloid, shows how newspapers can empower citizens to address and resolve issues that concern them,

 

Relief? Sure

IN MEDIA WATCH BRIEFS |05/01/2009

There is a delicious nugget in Information Commissioner Shailesh Gandhi’s report for 2008. He says that in the first quarter of the year RTI was able to uncover the fact that the Maharashtra Chief Minister¿s relief fund was used,among other things, to build toilets in the Press Club of India at Delhi...

 

No right to information

BY Dipur Shaw| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |16/11/2008

Even under the Right To Information Act, departments related to the case have denied information on what transpired in the Batla House encounter.

 

RTI exposes scam in Bihar 

BY ajay kumar| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |31/10/2007

A major bungling in the recommendation for admission in medical colleges by Bihar govt. was exposed through the effective use of RTI by a journalist.

 

RTI exposes vendetta by union minister

BY Vishnu Rajgadia| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |04/09/2007

In its reply, Coal India admitted that the transfer was based on the reference from a VIP, but was silent on the name.

 

A media activist passes away

BY Vinita Deshmukh| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |21/07/2007

Tributes to Prakash Kardaley, a Right to Information campaigner who taught many journalists in Pune and elsewhere, to use the Act.

 

Nudged by RTI, Jharkhand government acts

IN MEDIA PRACTICE |20/10/2006

A newspaper’s persistence compels the State’s Law Department to move on a file pending for 40 odd months.

 

No right to information for J & K

BY zafar| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |17/10/2006

Neither the State act passed in January 2004 nor the Central act are being implemented in J & K, almost three years down the line.

 

Naïve about notings

BY darius| IN OPINION |02/08/2006

How well-informed has the criticism of the government been on the amendments to the Right to Information Act?

 

 

Testing the uses of RTI in Jharkhand

BY vishnu| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |16/01/2006

Letter to the Hoot: Armed with the act, students of the Prabhat Khabar Institute of Media Studies are zealously filing applications in government departments.

 

Right To Information Act - the final countdown

IN MEDIA PRACTICE |21/07/2005

With ninety days left for the full implementation of the RTI Act, it is time for an update.

 

Right to information in Pakistan

IN MEDIA PRACTICE |21/07/2005

 

RTI Amendments imply more government control

IN MEDIA PRACTICE |11/05/2005

 

Right to Information confined to government

IN MEDIA PRACTICE |10/01/2005

Right to Information confined to government

 

Jan Sunvai comes to Delhi

BY rana| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |08/01/2003

For the first time a community in Delhi experienced the actual exposing of corruption and bad governance caused by government personnel and politicians.

 

Right to information website for Maharashtra

BY Kardaley| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |02/12/2002

 

Goa's little-noticed experiences with the Right to Information

BY Frederick Noronha| IN MEDIA PRACTICE |30/08/2002

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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ET reports that the Congress party will  have a hyperlocal social media strategy for the forthcoming state elections. It says the Congress social media cell has "identified block level social media warriors" who will give feedback on community level issues to the party's social media  war room. Such as which local temples  with a particular caste following the Congress state unit chief should visit, or in which areas farm loan waiver schemes are going badly, giving the Congress an issue to raise.                    

Doordarshan interviewed  two BJP ministers in the afternoon about what they thought of Rahul Gandhi's speech during the no-trust motion, and why BJP MPs had felt the need to come outside Parliament and attack him. Ministers of state Ashwini Chaubey and Ram Kirpal Yadav answered at considerable length and were allowed to have their say. The reporter also asked one of them what he thought about RG's hugging the PM and he effectively snorted in disapproval. When a panel discussion began after this,  more leading questions from the news anchor about this 'jadu ki jhappi."  And more criticism followed.                        

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