Information commissions, Powers of Information Commissions

  1. The Central Information Commission/State Information Commission has a duty to receive complaints from any person –
  • Who has not been able to submit an information request because a PIO has not been appointed;
  • Who has been refused information that was requested;
  • Who has received no response to his/her information request within the specified time limits;
  • Who thinks the fees charged are unreasonable;
  • Who thinks information given is incomplete or false or misleading; and;
  • Any other matter relating to obtaining information under this law.
  1. Power to order inquiry if there are reasonable grounds.
  2. CIC/SCIC will have powers of Civil Court such as – 
  • Summoning and enforcing attendance of persons, compelling them to give oral or written evidence on oath and to produce documents or things;
  • Requiring the discovery and inspection of documents;
  • Receiving evidence on affidavit;
  • Requisitioning public records or copies from any court or office;
  • Issuing summons for examination of witnesses or documents;
  • Any other matter which may be prescribed.
  1. All records covered by this law (including those covered by exemptions) must be given to CIC/SCIC during inquiry for examination.
  2. Power to secure compliance of its decisions from the Public Authority includes- 
  3. Providing access to information in a particular form;
  4. Directing the public authority to appoint a PIO/APIO where none exists;
  5. Publishing information or categories of information;
  6. Making necessary changes to the practices relating to management, Maintenance and destruction of records;
  7. Enhancing training provision for officials on RTI;
  8. Seeking an annual report from the public authority on compliance with this law;
  9. Require it to compensate for any loss or other detriment suffered by the applicant;
  10. Impose penalties under this law; or
  11. Reject the application. (S.18 and S.19)

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