Ahead of the government’s likely introduction of an amendment in the Right to Information (RTI) Act on Monday to keep political parties out of it, at least 35 MPs, majority of them from the BJP, are not in favour of the move.
These MPs have conveyed their “personal views” to a group of activists and former central information commissioner Shailesh Gandhi, who had contacted them to seek their support against the government’s move to dilute the RTI.
A group of NRI campaigners from the United States, the Association for Democratic Reforms and Gandhi had been contacting MPs from various political parties on the issue. They have now released the list of MPs who spoke to them with their stand on the issue.
Of the political parties, only the Trinamool Congress has made it clear that it will oppose the amendment which seeks to reverse the June 3 order of the Central Information Commission, which had stated that six major political parties, including the Congress and the BJP were covered under the RTI Act.
The MPs indicated they will finally abide by stand their parties will take. The token opposition to the amendment bill is unlikely to pose any danger to it, since all major parties are in favour of staying out of RTI.
The BJP MPs opposed to amending the RTI include Navjot Singh Sidhu, Najma Heptulla, Yogi Adityanath, Rajendra Aggarwal and Hansraj Ahir. DMK MP Abdul Rahman and nominated member Anu Aga are also opposed to amending the Act.