Madhya Pradesh will soon allow online applications under the right to information (RTI) Act, a top official said, a move activists belief will bring in transparency in the affairs of the government.
When the project is launched, MP will become only the second state after Maharashtra to have the facility. The Centre also has an online RTI facility.
“It would be launched very soon,” said Rajesh Kaul, the deputy secretary of the general administration department (GAD), RTI cell.
Officials said that a web portal is likely to be launched soon in the state where RTI applicants would get the facility to submit their queries/appeals and requisite fees online.
Initially, the facility would be limited to seeking information from the GAD but would be soon other state departments would be linked to the portal, making the entire RTI process online-driven.
The sources said all preparations for the online RTI process have been completed and the National Informatics Centre (NIC) has been roped in to develop the portal.
The portal will have facility to submit applications and appeals related to RTI, pay online fees, monitor status of application and will also display the appeal orders issued by the first appellate authorities.
Trained dedicated staff has already been posted in RTI cell of GAD and work has been distributed amongst them, the officials added. The online facility is provided in keeping with the directives of the department of personnel and training (DoPT) of the government of India.
Activist Ajay Dubey, who has been persistently pushing for online RTI application facility, expressed happiness at the decision. “It is a good move that was long overdue. Online facility ensures speed and transparency of work. Also the fact that appeal orders would be made online would help the applicants a lot.”
He, however, said the rate for providing information and quality of disclosure should improve as currently information in denied in many cases.
Also, the State Information Commission should make their orders available online, he said.