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1.9 lakh cases pending in state information commissions: Study

1.9 lakh cases pending in state information commissions: Study

New Delhi: Around 1,87,974 cases are pending, which comprise collective backlog in the disposal of appeals and complaints, in the 16 state information commissions (SICs) as on December 31, 2015, and penalty has been imposed in only 1.3 per cent of the cases, a study has found.

The study was done jointly by Research, Assessment & Analysis Group (RaaG) and Satark Nagrik Sangathan (SNS).

According to the study, pendency in the Assam SIC went up by 240 per cent, while Odisha and Punjab went up by more than 60 per cent.

The pendency in Kerala SIC went up by 49 per cent, while the Central Information Commission (CIC) saw a rise of 43 per cent.

"Despite the dictum of the Supreme Court, more than 60 per cent of the IC orders analysed contained deficiencies in terms of not recording critical facts. Rajasthan and Bihar SICs were the worst performers with 74 per cent and 73 per cent of the orders respectively, not describing the information that was sought," said the study.

The study also revealed that in 9 of the 16 ICs for which data was available for 2016, the waiting time for a hearing was more than one year.

"The analysis of the IC websites revealed that many of the commissions had not posted their annual reports on the web and very few had updated the information.

As the analysis was done in September 2016, it would be reasonable to expect that annual reports up to 2015 would be available on the websites. Yet, 21 out of 28 ICs (75 per cent) did not provide the annual report for 2015, said the study.

It also added that the percentage of orders, in which the subsidiary directions were not in compliance with the RTI Act, was more than 65 per cent.

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