PUBLIC INTEREST


Vinita Deshmukh Vinita Deshmukh 16 September 2021
The High Courts have a poor record of proactive disclosures under section 4 of the Right to Information (RTI) Act in terms of implementation and quality of dissemination of such information on their respective websites. This can be gauged from the fact that only 15 of the 24 High Courts have...

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Moneylife Digital Team 14 September 2021
As many as 15 sitting and former information commissioners (ICs) have urged chief justice NV Ramana to direct courts, which are routinely invoking their writ jurisdiction to pass stay orders against decisions given by the information commission on Right to Information (RTI) appeals, to...

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Tim Golden  and   Sebastian Rotella (ProPublica) 14 September 2021
This story was originally published by ProPublica.   A long-suppressed FBI report on Saudi Arabia’s connections to the 9/11 plot has revealed that Saudi religious officials stationed in the United States had more significant connections to two of the hijackers than has been previously...

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Vinita Deshmukh Vinita Deshmukh 11 September 2021
Such a parody! At one end, there is the special protection group (SPG), a paramilitary force whose sole objective is to provide proximate security to the prime minister (PM) of India. At the other, the PMO (prime minister's office), where visitors’ records need not be kept! This is revealed...

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Peter Elkind, Jack Gillum  and   Craig Silverman (ProPublica) 07 September 2021
This story was originally published by ProPublica.   WhatsApp assures users that no one can see their messages — but the company has an extensive monitoring operation and regularly shares personal information with prosecutors.   When Mark Zuckerburg unveiled a new...

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IANS 03 September 2021
Facebook-owned WhatsApp has been fined 225 million euros ($267 million) for breaking the European Union's (EU) data privacy rules.   According to The Verge, Ireland's Data Protection Commission (DPC) announced the decision in an 89-page summary, noting that WhatsApp did not properly...

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Moneylife Digital Team 02 September 2021
“The introduction of the RTI Act has meant great things for the common citizen in India. Since I was the chief central information commissioner (CIC), transparency has improved, but it can be much better with suo moto disclosure of information under Section 4 of the Right to Information (RTI)...

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Vinita Deshmukh Vinita Deshmukh 01 September 2021
Thanks to Section 2(1)(h) of the Right to Information (RTI) Act, there have time and again been disagreements and debates on whether or not a private entity falls under this law. That is because the Section defines a 'public authority' as one which is a body owned, controlled or substantially...

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IANS 01 September 2021
Sri Lanka has declared an economic emergency, after a steep fall in the value of the South Asian country's currency caused a spike in food prices.   Authorities say they will take control of the supply of basic food items, including rice and sugar, and set prices in an attempt to...

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Global growth rebound has solidified, but spread of delta variant poses risks, Moody's Investors Service said in its latest assessment of global economy as the pandemic continues.   According to the credit ratings agency, G-20 economies are expected to grow by 6.2 per cent as a whole...

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Jenny Deam  and   Bianca Fortis (ProPublica) 30 August 2021
A May 1 decision by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to only track breakthrough infections that lead to hospitalization or death has left the nation with a muddled understanding of COVID-19’s impact on the vaccinated.   Meggan Ingram was fully vaccinated when...

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Vinita Deshmukh Vinita Deshmukh 25 August 2021
At a petition heard last week by the Supreme Court (SC) regarding the delay in the appointment of information commissioners under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the judges expressed displeasure at the failure of the states to fill vacancies and warned of strict action against...

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Megan Rose (ProPublica) 25 August 2021
The chaotic collapse of the Afghan military in recent months made starkly clear that the $83 billion U.S. taxpayers spent to create and fund those security forces achieved little. But a new report this week by the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction also reveals the...

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Moneylife Digital Team 24 August 2021
“The Right to Information (RTI) law is power disseminated. Information is power and hence disseminating information translates into the dissemination of power and what it has done is, is unpacked those centres of power, centres of impunity, which wreaked havoc and that is rare—something which...

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Vinita Deshmukh Vinita Deshmukh 19 August 2021
Remember the case of the illegal boards put up in government offices across Maharashtra, threatening citizens with various and selective Sections from the Indian Penal Code (IPC) in case of misbehaviour towards government servants? Well, the aam aadmis have actually managed to have some of...

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Since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, over 5,000 pandemic-related phishing websites have surfaced, designed to steal users' credentials via fake payment offers and discounted Covid tests, among others.   Recently, phishing ads for fake QR codes and vaccination certificates for...

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Prof M Sridhar Acharyulu 13 August 2021
In the Saurav Das vs the department for promotion of industry and internal trade (DPIIT) case, the latter, an important public authority at the Centre, was not willing to share very important public information, namely, the information relating to sufficient supply of oxygen.    It is...

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Raja Muzaffar Bhat (The Leaflet) 13 August 2021
Section 6(3) of the RTI Act is intended to save the applicant’s effort and time if the information sought from a public authority is with another department. However, it is being exploited by several officials who refuse to furnish information and forward the application to another department...

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Vinita Deshmukh Vinita Deshmukh 12 August 2021
After my story on the smooth process at the Pune passport office was published on 5th August hailing the remarkable efficiency of a once shabbily operated passport office, what hits us now is an anti-climax!   I got  several calls complaining that the Pune police verification is slow;...

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Justin Elliott  and   Robert Faturechi (ProPublica) 12 August 2021
Billionaire business owners deployed lobbyists to make sure Trump’s 2017 tax bill was tailored to their benefit. Confidential IRS records show the windfall that followed.   In November 2017, with the administration of President Donald Trump rushing to get a massive tax overhaul...

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