Central and State Information Commission


Central Information Commission

It is not a constitutional body.

Central Information Commission was constituted by the Central Government through a Gazette Notification.

Composition—

Commission includes one Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) and not more than 10 Information Commissioners (IC) who will be appointed by the President of India.

Eligibility Criteria—

Candidates for CIC/IC must be persons of eminence in public life with wide knowledge and experience in law, science and technology, social service, management, journalism, mass media or administration and governance.

CIC/IC shall not be a Member of Parliament or Member of the Legislature of any State or Union Territory.

He/she shall not hold any other office of profit or connected with any political party or carrying on any business or pursuing any profession.

Appointment Committee includes Prime Minister (Chair), Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha and one Union Cabinet Minister to be nominated by the Prime Minister.

Term of Office—

CIC shall be appointed for a term of 5 years from date on which he enters upon his office or till he attains the age of 65 years, whichever is earlier.

CIC is not eligible for reappointment.

Salary will be the same as that of the Chief Election Commissioner. This will not be varied to the disadvantage of the CIC during service.

IC shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office or till he attains the age of sixty-five years, whichever is earlier and shall not be eligible for reappointment as IC.

Salary will be the same as that of the Election Commissioner. This will not be varied to the disadvantage of the IC during service.

IC is eligible for appointment as CIC but will not hold office for more than a total of five years including his/her term as IC.

 

State Information Commission

The State Information Commission is constituted by the State Government through a Gazette notification.

It includes State Chief Information Commissioner (SCIC) and not more than 10 State Information Commissioners (SIC) to be appointed by the Governor.

Eligibility Criterion—

The Appointments Committee is headed by the Chief Minister. Other members include the Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly and one Cabinet Minister nominated by the Chief Minister.

The qualifications for appointment as SCIC/SIC are the same as that for Central Commissioners.

The salary of the State Chief Information Commissioner will be the same as that of an Election Commissioner.

The salary of the State Information Commissioner will be the same as that of the Chief Secretary of the State Government.

 

Powers and functions of Information Commissions—

[1] The Central Information Commission/State Information Commission has a duty to receive complaints from any person—

[a] who has not been able to submit an information request because a PIO has not been appointed

[b] who has been refused information that was requested;

[c] who has received no response to his/her information request within the specified time limits ;

[d] who thinks the fees charged are unreasonable ;

[e] who thinks information given is incomplete or false or misleading ;and

[f] any other matter relating to obtaining information under this law.

[2] CIC/SCIC will have powers of Civil Court such as—

[a] summoning and enforcing attendance of persons, compelling them to give oral or written evidence on oath and to produce documents or things;

[b] requiring the discovery and inspection of documents;

[c] receiving evidence on affidavit ;

[d] requisitioning public records or copies from any court or office

[e] issuing summons for examination of witnesses or documents

[f] any other matter which may be prescribed.

[3] Power to secure compliance of its decisions from the Public Authority includes—

[a] providing access to information in a particular form;

[b] directing the public authority to appoint a PIO/APIO where none exists;

[c] publishing information or categories of information;

[d] making necessary changes to the practices relating to management, maintenance and destruction of records ;

[e] enhancing training provision for officials on RTI;

[f] seeking an annual report from the public authority on compliance with this law;

[g] require it to compensate for any loss or other detriment suffered by the applicant ;

[h] impose penalties under this law.