• The Uttarakhand government issued a notification to declare the state Vigilance Department as an “intelligence organisation”, which in effect will exclude it from the purview of the Right to Information (RTI) Act.
• The government issued the notification stating that the Governor has given assent to declare “vigilance department” and “vigilance establishment” as “Intelligence Organisation.”
• By declaring Vigilance department and establishment as intelligence organisation, both are exempted from the RTI Act.
• The 2nd schedule of the RTI Act provides a list of 26 organisations that are exempted from providing information on grounds of being intelligence and security organisations.
Section 24 of the Act states:
• The Central government has the authority to amend the 2nd schedule from time to time, thereby adding, removing or substituting organisations present.
• The state government has a similar authority and is authorised to exempt an intelligence and security organisation by issuing a notification in the official gazette.
• It states that both the Centre and state governments are “required to present the said notification before their respective legislatures”.
Mains Paper 2: Polity
Prelims level: Right to Information Act