Guide For The Central Public Information Officers
Suo Motu Disclosure
The Act makes it obligatory for every public authority to make suo motu disclosure in respect of the particulars of its organization, functions, duties and other matters, as provided in section 3 of the Act. The information so published, according to sub-section (3) of section 3, should be easily accessible with the CPIO in electronic format. The CPIO should, therefore, make concerned efforts to ensure that the requirements of the Section 3 are met and maximum information in respect of the authority is made available on the internet. It would help him in two ways. First, the number of applications under the Act would be reduced and secondly, it would facilitate his work of providing information inasmuch as most of the information would be available ho him at one place.
Fee for Seeking Information
An applicant, along with his application, is required to send a demand draft or a banker's cheque or an India Postal Order of Rs.10/- (Rupees ten), payable to the Accounts Officer of the public authority as fee prescribed for seeking information. He can also make payment of fee by way cash to the Accounts Officer of the public authority or to the Central Assistant Public Information Officer against proper receipt.
Additional fee has been prescribed by the Right to Information (Regulation of Fee and Cost) Rules, 2005 for supply of information as give below:
- rupees two (Rs.2/-) for each page (in A-3 or A-3 size paper) created or copied;
- actual charge or cost price of a copy in larger size paper;
- actual cost or price for samples or models;
- for inspection of records, no fee for the first hour; and a fee of rupees five (Rs.5/-) for each subsequent hour (or fraction thereof);
- for information provided in diskette or floppy rupees fifty (Rs.50/-) per diskette or floppy; and
- for information provided in printed from at the price fixed for such publication or rupees two per page of photocopy for extracts from the publication.
If the applicant belongs to below poverty line (BPL) category, he is not required to pay any fee. However, he submit a proof in support of his claim to belong to the below poverty line. The application not accompanied by the prescribed fee of Rs.10/- or proof of the applicant's belonging to below poverty line, as the case may be, shall not be a valid application under the At and, therefore, dose not entitle the applicant to get information.
Contents and Format of Application
An applicant making request for information is not required to give any reason for requesting the information or any other personal details except those that may be necessary for contacting him. Also, the Act of the Rules do not prescribe any format of application for seeking information.Therefore, the applicant should not be asked to give justification for seeking information or to give details of his job etc. or to submit application in any particular form.
Soon after receiving the application, the CPIO should check whether the applicant has made the payment of application fee of Rs. 10 or whether the applicant is a person belonging to a Below Poverty Line (BPL) family. If application is not accompanied by the prescribed fee or the BPL Certificate, it cannot be treated as a valid application under the RTI Act and may be ignored.