RTI Act and Exemptions – UPSC Prelims

Right to Information Act, 2005 and exemptions:
  • RTI Act provides for timely disclosure of information by citizens from both central and State Public Authorities. It seeks to empower citizens and promote accountability and transparency.
  • Under the Act, Public Authorities are required to make disclosures on various aspects of their structure and functioning. This includes
    • disclosure on their organization
    • functions and structure
    • powers and duties of its officers and employees and
    • Financial information.
  • Public Authorities: Public authority means any authority or body or institution of self-government established or constituted under or by
    • the Constitution;
    • Any other law made by Parliament/State Legislature.
    • Notification issued or order made by the appropriate Government, and includes any—
    • Body owned, controlled, or substantially financed;
    • Non-Government organisations substantially financed, directly or indirectly by funds provided by the appropriate Government.
  • Exceptions: The RTI Act allows public authorities to reject RTI requests on a number of grounds.
    • The information which would endanger life and safety to that which involves irrelevant personal information,
    • Cabinet papers,
    • foreign governments
    • copyrights, or sovereignty
    • security and intelligence matters among others.
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