- The Right to Information (Amendment) Bill, 2013 was introduced in the Lok Sabha on August 12, 2013. The Bill amends the Right to Information Act, 2005 (RTI Act).
- In June 2013, the Central Information Commission held six political parties to be public authorities under the RTI Act and hence subject to the transparency and information requirements under the Act.
- The amendment Bill removes political parties from the ambit of the definition of public authorities and hence from the purview of the RTI Act.
- The amendment will apply retrospectively, with effect from June 3, 2013.
- The Statement of Objects and Reasons of the Bill states that there are already provisions in the Representation of People Act, 1951 as well as in the Income Tax Act, 1961 which deal with transparency in the financial aspects of political parties and their candidates. It also adds that declaring a political party as public authority under the RTI Act would hamper its internal functioning and political rivals could misuse the provisions of the RTI Act, thus affecting the functioning of political parties.
DISCLAIMER: This document is being furnished to you for your information. You may choose to reproduce or redistribute this report for noncommercial purposes in part or in full to any other person with due acknowledgement of PRS Legislative Research (“PRS”). The opinions expressed herein are entirely those of the author(s). PRS makes every effort to use reliable and comprehensive information, but PRS does not represent that the contents of the report are accurate or complete. PRS is an independent, not-for-profit group. This document has been prepared without regard to the objectives or opinions of those who may receive it.