This article itself is based on wrong beliefs and rooted animosity against the Salt Department. Even having strong reservations about the policies being followed by Salt Department, the author continued to work under them. The author do not have daring to quit and fight against injustice. Pen service is not sufficient against injustice. One must have balanced thoughts on any subject. There is no doubt and courts have confirmed that the salt pan lands belong to the Government of India. Also it is high time that the Government recognize the rights and existence of salt manufacturers and give them due share in the salt pan lands as owners. One should not speak the language of land grabber builder community. It is truth that the salt manufacturers only have permanent salt manufacturing rights. It seems that the Mr. Venu is working overtime for the benefit of builder community. Builder community is having an eye on the salt pan public lands most of which are located in prime areas. Please introspect Mr. Venu.
These tips, I found on the net, r very good.
1) A good RTI application as boring as a laundry list. It is a bare list of items of information WITHOUT ANY reasoning. If the first draft of RTI application is interesting to read, something is wrong. Make corrections by deleting the interesting material, such as logical threads of reasoning and justification. Your RTI application MUST NOT disclose the overall nature of the problem in your mind. It MUST NOT give a glimpse of what you intend to do with the requested information e.g. register police complaints, approach investigating agencies, file a PIL etc. Also, your RTI application MUST NOT indicate how badly you want the information, and therefore, please don’t mention anything such as “I am a senior citizen dependent on my pension cheques, and I have been pushed from pillar-to-post in search of this information.”
2) A good RTI application is short and childishly simple for the PIO to fulfill. On the other hand, a badly-drafted RTI application is like a huge challenge to the PIO, virtually saying “I dare you to try and answer all these questions.” Put yourselves in the shoes of the PIO; what would you do if you see a lengthy RTI application that asks endless questions and supplementary questions? I would endlessly postpone looking at the application, and then go out of my way to justify the delay or denial. Wouldn’t you?
3) If you need a lot of information, write many small RTI applications. A single lengthy application may scare and overwhelm the PIO, and tempt him to throw it into his drawer. He will hesitate and postpone searching for the information. Instead, send a small, manageable RTI application with only 3-4 questions. Then, after you receive a reply to that, send another one… and another. This strategy also has another advantage: If the PIO fails to answer more than one of these applications, he feels the threat of being eligible to a larger fine (Rs 250 x days of delay x no. of unanswered RTI applications) Even if he escapes penalty after denying information to one application, there is always the recurring chance that other pending applications will get him penalized or reprimanded.
4) Keep the period of information minimal. Don’t be over-ambitious. For an RTI applicant, it is very easy to write a question like, “Give copies of all gun licenses issued from January 1981 till date.” For the PIO, this means searching 30 years of files and records. Older files may have been put into basements or buried under tons of old dusty files. Therefore, please ask yourself whether you REALLY need data that is so old, or whether you are just trying to satisfy an academic curiosity. Don’t request 30 years data if five years data will suffice for your purposes. Don’t ask for five years data if six months data is sufficient.
5) Crime-fighting RTI application? Ask for plenty of unnecessary data to misdirect mala-fide PIO. (Of course this contradicts earlier points… but there is method in the madness.) Suppose you want the details of a certain building that you suspect has built-up area in excess of permissions. To confirm your suspicions and file a complaint, you need to ask for the approved floor plan, Occupation Certificate etc. You rightly fear that if you make a direct request, corrupt officials of the Building Permissions department will deny, delay endlessly and argue that the files are lost. Question: how to improve your chances of quickly getting these key documents? Answer: Generally ask for inspection of entire files of five other unrelated buildings in your neighborhood. Include the name of this particular building in a random and casual way. When you go for inspection with 4-5 others, do not show any special interest of this particular building, and request photocopies of similar and unnecessary documents along with what you really want. Of course you will spend hundreds of rupees on xeroxing unnecessary documents, but as you will get the necessary documents without delays and appeals, it is worth it!
6) You are a citizen, not an investigating agency. You don’t have to substantiate every allegation. File complaint first, RTIs later. Sometimes, we hesitate before leveling allegations and writing complaints. Our sense of fairness compels us to get into fact-finding by filing an RTI application first. That is not necessary. You are an alert citizen and not an expert; your first duty is to register a complaint! Let the investigating agency guys do their job and earn their salaries. Later on, you may optionally write an RTI application to uncover facts and documents… but that is your second step, not first. As the cowboys say, “Shoot first and ask questions later.”
7) Don’t shoot your first draft; first drafts are always faulty. After you have written down your first draft of RTI application (or complaint or anything else), let it cool down in your drawer for a couple of days. Then take a re-look and think about making improvements. Ask a friend or colleague to have a look and give you suggestions.
A few days back Sushil Sheti and now Amit Jethwa has been killed.These were real whistle blowers who died heroic deaths like Socrates and Jesus and it has been proved again that whosoever would try to help humanity would be killed ultimately .
With tears in my eyes--I salute them and pay my heartful homage to them.
These are the real heroes ,not Shahrukh or a star player of Cricket called a world game foolishly.
Corrupt people are killing RTI activists and Govt. is trying to kill the RTI act itself.
What a plight !
Strategies To Disarm RTI Officials/PIO
RTI officials are hell-bent on evading/delaying answers of RTI application.
So here are some suggestions so that they may not get such chances.
Write in your RTI application that you are seeking info under RTI act 2005, otherwise they may say that the info was not sought under RTI Act and waste you 30 days (Believe me even the replies which they could be given in a single day would be given on 29th/30th day only).
If you feel that PIO may demand more money for photocopies etc. then always send two applications --one with Rs.10/- and one with more than Rs.10/- say Rs. 40/50/100/-because if you send application with Rs.10/- only PIO would waste your 30 days and ask you to deposit Rs.20/30/40 /-- for photocopies etc. and if you send more than Rs. 10/- PIO may return you application after 30 days asking you to send Rs.10/- only and giving some reason ( reasonable or unreasonable/legal or illegal) that more than Rs.10/- can not deposited with RTI application. Hence the suggestion of sending an application with Rs.10/- and another with more than Rs.10/-.
If you are not 100% sure that to whom the postal order be addressed then send blank IPO but fill the column where sender’s name and address is to be written. Now postal clerk may resist that postal order be filled, explain him this clause, I assure you with my experience blank IPO can be received by PIO office. Why it should be done because if you send IPO in the name of someone whom you fill is the right person to whom the IPO is to be sent but according to PIO office that is not the right person,PIO will send back your RTI after 28 days asking you to send a fresh application with IPO’s in the name of right person. If you will send a blank IPO ,you may snatch a chance from PIO of delaying reply off your RTI..
Attach each and every relevant document with your RTI application but give the details of attachments in the application also.
If your RTI application consists of more than one page, get stamped receiving on each page separately by the counter clerk .Post office clerks do this easily but PIO office clerks don’t do this at all as per my experience so why not send one set of RTI through post office and another directly to the PIO office. Because the applications sent directly to the PIO office take 5 less days in getting replies than the applications sent through post offices. So to decrease 5 days approach PIO office directly but if you do not get proper receiving on each page of your application (as is expected) approach post office also. Use both options.
PIO's are in the habit of replying that record of the info sought is not available so to disarm them before handedly include these lines in the application written here below: ------------
1. What is the retention period of record?
2. Under which rule the record has been destroyed, if it was?
3. If the record is untraceable, who are the Officials responsible for not maintaining it?
Also incorporate these two paragraphs to get better results: ----------
1. If you can not give the whole information demanded by me, please give a part of the information which can be given according to section10 the RTI Act 2005. Section 10 of the Act allows those part(s) of the record which are not exempt from disclosure and which can reasonably be severed from parts containing exempt information to be provided.
2. If the information sought by me can not be given to me please give me the certified copies of the laws/bylaws/order/circular etc. under which such information is forbidden to the public.
I have written whatsoever little mine experience is, plz. contribute to enlighten me and other readers also.
While sending blank Postal order include these lines in your RTI-application
I am not aware of the payee details. Kindly fill the appropriate details in IPO # worth Rs......./-(Rs.............. only) as it is the duty of PIO to provide reasonable assistance under 5 (3) of the RTI act to applicant.
Also include these lines to get answers of PIO more answerable
Whatsoever information you would provide me on paper, that paper should be duly signed and clearly stamped by some competent authority. If you use the backside of that paper for providing me the information, please get that side also duly signed and clearly stamped by some competent authority.