Open Invitation to Join in
Mass Dharana protesting against secrecy maintained by State Government in appointment of Information Commissioners in Odisha
Venue- Lower PMG, Bhubaneswar, Date-16.7.15
As aware you are, on 16.5.2015, Sri Narasingha Mishra while coming out of Selection Committee Meeting held under Chairmanship of Chief Minister for nominating names for the post of State Information Commissioner, said to the Media that the selection has been made arbitrarily and the people nominated do not deserve to be Information Commissioner. Similarly, on 18th May, hundreds of RTI Activists and Civil Society leaders assembled together at Raj Bhawan and submitted memorandum to Governor, Odisha not to appoint the arbitrarily and politically motivated selected candidates in the post of the Information Commission. It needs to be mentioned here that since last ten years, RTI Activists of the state have been demanding before the Govt. to follow the transparent procedure in the appointment of Information Commission.
In our pursuit to know about details of procedure followed for the selection and appointment of Information Commissioner, we the RTI Activists filed series of RTI Applications to the PIO, Dept. of Information and Public Relations just after the selection Committee meeting is over. Though two months have passed, the PIO has neither supplied the information nor responded RTI Applications.
So, it is clear that the State Government has followed fraudulent means and manipulated the procedure to selection their political stooges for the post of Information Commissioners. It deserves to be mentioned here that while adjudication the Writ Petition No. 210/2012 and Review Petition No. 2309/2012, the Supreme Court has given direction to both Central Govt. and State Govt. that the Committees under Sections 12(3) and 15(3) of the Act while making recommendations to the President or to the Governor, as the case may be, for appointment of Chief Information Commissioner and Information Commissioners must mention against the name of each candidate recommended, the facts to indicate his eminence in public life, his knowledge in the particular field and his experience in the particular field and these facts must be accessible to the citizens as part of their right to information under the Act after the appointment is made.”
Since last ten years, this Govt. has taken every step not only to dilute the RTI Act but also to make office of Information Commission dysfunctional by appointing useless people as Information Commissioners. Odisha RTI Rules, 2005 termed as absurd, anti-people and illegitimate is still in practice and standing as biggest stumbling block for the people to exercise their right to access the information under RTI Act.
So, in this context, Mass Dharana of RTI Activists and Civil Society leaders under the banner of Odisha Soochana Adhikar Abhijan and other Civil Society Organisations is being organised at Lower PMG, Bhubaneswar on 16.7.15 at 10 AM demanding the information about selection and appointment of Information Commissioners to be put in public domain and withdrawal of anti-people Odisha RTI Rules, 2005. A memorandum will be submitted to Governor, Odisha appraising him about the arbitrarily procedure followed for appointing the Information Commissioners which is illegal under RTI Act and seeking direction to Govt. to put all information in public domain and make it accessible under RTI Act. So that, true Character of the State Govt. will be exposed before the people of Odisha.
State Convener, Odisha Soochana Adhikar Abhijan