“Week-long Anti-Corruption Campaign in Odisha”- What for
Right to Information Act which came into force from 12th October 2005 has mandated to enforce transparent and accountable governance system in the country. Within 11 years of its implementation, it has been recognised as biggest tool in hand of the common people to fight out corruption and irregularities in the administration. It has also helped in improving governance system, making it transparent and ensuring participation of the people in decision-making process. As per RAAG study, a national study undertaken on RTI, around 80 percentage of the RTI-Users i.e., Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribe, Minority Community are using RTI for redressal of their grievances and to access their entitlements.
In Odisha, Odisha Soochana Adhikar Abhijan, a state-level forum of RTI Activists and Civil Society Groups have been spearheading campaign for effective implementation of RTI Act. But it is needless to say that Use of RTI has still remained confined to educated middle class. However, during decade-long campaign, RTI Activists have succeeded in not only exposing huge corruption and irregularities in mining, land scam and many other scams but also popularising the law at different level through organising series of campaign, training, seminar and symposium etc. In few remote areas, the common people are also using the Act to access their entitlements and exposing corruption, misappropriation of fund in NREGS work, denial of house under Biju Puca Yojana, IAY, black-marketing of food items under MDM, IDS etc. In contrast to Campaign, the Govt., has tried its best to dilute RTI Act and made it inoperative through framing anti-people Odisha RTI Rules,2015 and appointing disgruntled, useless Odisha Information Commissioners in the state. However, massive campaign of RTI Activists and their dedication to enforce the law has kept RTI alive in the state.
To make RTI Reach out at down-trodden masses i.e., dalits, minorities, tribals, OSAA has devised strategy to organise seven-day Campaign in every district headquarter to sensitise the people about RTI, procedure to be followed to submit RTI Application, appeal and complaint to Commission. As hundreds of the people of different section of society mostly the poor common people come to district headquarter to get their grievance redressed, RTI Camp/ Stall will be put in prominent place to provide instant service to the people to acess information and fight out corruption. The Team will also receive complaints of corruption from the people and file at appropriate authority for enquiry and action. Besides that signature campaign demanding CBI inquiry into Mining Scam, Land Scam, amendment of Odisha RTI Rules, constitution of Lokayukta at State and immediate notification for constitution of Lokpal at centre and implementation of Whistle-blower Protection Act in the country.
Details of proposed Activities
1. Prior to seven days of the programme, 5000 to 10,000 leaflet will be distributed in each district to senitise the people about the proposed campaign from 1st to 7th April, 2017.
2. RTI Stall will be installed in prominent place of district headquarter with display of banner, poster.
3. Memorandum demanding CBI inquiry into land scam and mining scam will be put in place for signature campaign.
4. Memorandum demanding constitution of Lokpal at Centre and Lokayukta in Odisha will be put in place for signature of the public.
5. RTI Application Form, Appeal Form will be kept in place for distribution among the people free of cost.
6. Myke campaign will also be organised.
7. Inspection of the documents proactively disclosed under section 4 (1b) of the RTI Act will be conducted in different offices by RTI Activists/ volunteers.
8. Booklet on RTI, Land Scam will be available in the stall for sale .
9. News Letter “Soohana Adhikar” will be put in place and Annual Subscription will be invited.
10. Trained volunteers will be kept alert to provide instant service to the people.
11. Media will be mobilised to telecast the news of the programme.
12. Seminar, Symposium and Mass Rally will be organised highlighting corruption issues, maladministration etc.
1. 10000 RTI will be filed across the state.
2. 100 Govt. offices will be visited and documents inspected.
3. 1000 members will be enrolled for Odisha Soochana Adhikar Abhijan
4. 10000 signature will be collected in support of demand for CBI inquiry into mining and Land Scam.
5. 10000 signature will be collected in support of demand for constitution of Lokpal at centre and Lokayukta in the state.,
6. Massive public opinion will be generated to enforce transparency in administration and demand for CBI inquiry into mining scam and land scam.
Odisha Soochana Adhikar Abhijan