A.N. Tiwari has been appointed the new Chief Information Commissioner of the country, succeeding the present incumbent Wajahat Habibullah, who retired on Wednesday.
One of the senior-most information commissioners at the Central Information Commission (CIC), Tiwari will only get two and a half months in the top post, till he retires on December 15.
The decision to appoint Tiwari, a 1969 batch IAS officer and former Secretary, department of personnel and training, has put an end to the uncertainty surrounding on who would succeed Habibullah. “Yes a decision to appoint Mr. A.N. Tiwari has been taken,” said a highly placed source and Habibullah confirmed the development.
“The Chief Information Commissioner is the administrative head of the commission and I am happy that a decision has been taken on time,” Habibullah said.
Names of former Delhi High Court Chief Justice A.P. Shah and environmentalist and noted RTI activist, Shekhar Singh were also doing the rounds.
The government consulted the Opposition BJP, a mandatory requirement according to the Right to Information Act, before sending the appointment file for final approval of the President.
The CIC is chosen by a committee comprising the Prime Minister, the leader of Opposition and a Cabinet minister. Information commissioners can be directly appointed by the government.
Tiwari as information commissioner is credited with bringing the Income Tax returns of political parties under public scrutiny.