How to make RTI Act effective

This has reference to the editorial, “Right to Information” (Oct 14). It remains to be seen whether the Right to Information (RTI) Act 2005 will really help people get the desired information. Every possible effort should be made to implement the Act.

For effective implementation, social marketing is needed. In this context, the media should reach out to the masses in a big way. The required application form must be published time and again by newspaper like The Tribune.

Certainly, there is a strong case for changing the attitude and mindset of the officials at all levels. The punitive measures stipulated in the Act should goad the officials to act in a responsible manner. The management information system (MIS) in all the organisations of the government and the private sector should be reoriented in tune with the RTI Act.

Dr M. M. GOEL, Kurukshetra




The editorial rightly suggests the need to make the RTI Act “truly effective”. I endorse the view that citizens should be allowed to have access to official notings. Otherwise, the legislation will lack teeth like many others since Independence.

M.P.S. RANDHAWA, Dhapai (Kapurthala)


The RTI Act is a step forward in good governance. It will usher in an era of transparency and accountability, provided wide publicity is given about the empowering provisions of the Act among the people. The fee for seeking information should be kept at reasonable levels.

Similarly, the bureaucracy should not become a stumbling block in the implementation of the Act. The officials should be given training on how best to implement it to help people.

The purported move for exempting file notings of the bureaucrats from the purview of the Act is unjustified and needs rethinking. If implemented properly, it will promote public-private partnership in governance. 



The RTI Act will ensure transparency in administration. It will also check red tape. Government work — at the Centre and in the states — is generally slow. Files move slowly because there is absolutely no accountability. The RTI Act is expected to address this problem because hereafter citizens can question the officers the reasons for delay. And officials will be made accountable for their acts of omission and commission.


LPG shortage continues

Notwithstanding Union Petroleum Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar’s promise to ease the shortage of LPG in the country, the continuing crisis is worrisome, especially to housewives, in view of the festival season and the advent of winter. Scarcity of LPG should not lead to hoarding and blackmarket. Oil companies should increase supplies to ease the situation.

The Left parties, which claim that they prevailed upon the Centre against increasing the LPG price, should also exert pressure on the government to maintain adequate supply of LPG.


Say no to crackers

Divali is fast approaching. We spend a lot of money on fireworks and crackers. People, especially children, and animals are injured, maimed or even blinded every year through irresponsible and callous use of fireworks. Parents of children and owners of animals do not take precautionary measures for their safety, resulting in mishaps.

This year there is a special reason for us to celebrate Divali without fireworks and crackers. Money thus saved should be donated to the hapless earthquake victims on either side of the LoC. Let us spare a thought for them. Let us not buy crackers and instead donate the money to rehabilitate the earthquake victims.



Divali is no more celebrated as the Festival of Lights. Now the focus is more on crackers than on lights. Bursting of crackers leads to pollution. It causes skin, eye and respiratory problems and adversely affects the health of the sick and the aged. Animals also get disturbed.

Why not celebrate Divali with only lights? Let’s also spend money on helping the needy. Let’s distribute sweets among the poor who cannot afford to buy them. Let’s celebrate Divali in a novel way.

SOURABH BAMBA, Ferozepore City


Earlier, Divali used to inculcate a high sense of brotherhood among people of all religions. But now there is no such friendship among the people. People burn crackers unmindful of their adverse affect on the ailing people and animals. Implementation of the Supreme Court’s ruling on the use of crackers within a specified limit is the need of the hour.

Religious leaders and teachers should impress upon society and students the need for celebrating a silent Divali. Let the funds earmarked for burning crackers and presenting Divali gifts be diverted to The Tribune Earthquake Relief Fund to help the victims in Kashmir.


Poverty in Delhi

The write up “Close encounters with poverty” (Sept 29) by a foreign tourist poignantly portrays an impoverished section of our society. The observation that “India isn’t just a cheap destination but a place where millions of people exist with few necessities and none of the convenience of life as I know it” is pertinent, though not totally correct.

Despite tall claims of the powers that be, the general state of public health and sanitation remains exceedingly poor. No wonder, we suffer from one epidemic or the other, inviting snide remarks from foreign tourists. It’s time we launched a national cleanliness campaign so that India becomes a world class tourist destination.

Brig. GOVIND SINGH KHIMTA (retd), Shimla


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