JUSTICE CORPS

Action group for judicial transparency, justice reforms and human rights.

Archive for the ‘judiciary and RTI’ Category

State of judiciary

Posted by justicecorps on March 5, 2007

Sanket S. Kashid, co-founder of Justice Corps, acquired information regarding pending cases in various cases in courts in Maharashtra. Given below, is a letter written to The Times of India and a digital copy of the reply received.

The dismal state of judiciary is quite evident from the findings.


Sanket Sudam Kashid
New Golden nest Complex,
Phase X, ‘A’ wing, Room no. 304,
Bhayander (E), Thane- 401105.
Mob.No. 98699 46890

Date: 01 March 2007.


To,
The Editor,
The Times of
India.


Sub: Pending cases in lower courts of
Maharashtra.

Sir,
I had applied under Right to Information Act 2005 for the number of courts and pending cases in lower courts of
Maharashtra in Bombay High Court. The reply and application is attached to this message.

First I had applied to the Law & Judiciary dept., but they transferred it to the Bombay High Court because they didn’t have jurisdiction. I asked them information about family, consumer, labour, criminal, civil, revenue, human rights courts etc… But Revenue, Consumer and Human Rights courts are not under the control of High Court.

But the number of pending cases is horrible. And I think it should be publish, as this will tell clear picture of lower judiciary in Maharashtra. And still they have not done double shifts in criminal courts. Earlier Justice Corps (JC’s) campaign was against the non-implementation of RTI Act by the Judiciary in Maharashtra, but now it is against the obstacles in the rules framed. Some of the rules that create obstacles in accessing information are:

– Charging applicant Rs. 10 per Xerox copy when central rules keep it to a reasonable Rs. 2,

– Not providing info if it already exists on website, therefore making it difficult for computer-internet illiterate applicants to acquire information, etc.

Yours frankly,

Sanket S. Kashid
Justice Corps – www.justicecorps.wordpress.com

Statement showing number of courts and pending cases

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feedback to the open letter: SC not exempt from RTI

Posted by justicecorps on January 15, 2007

The responses that we got from common citizens, activists and people working in the judicial system have only reaffirmed our faith in the path that we have chosen. We are grateful and hope that this contentious issue would be debated at a broader level. The SC must take cognisance of the peoples voice, with immediate effect.

 

See letter:
https://justicecorps.wordpress.com/2007/01/10/sc-must-acknowledge-rti/

Some of the responses are as follows:

 

I am in agreement with your letter. Please send us more information about your organization and working.

Rajesh Tyagi
Advocate, Supreme Court of India
rajeshtyagi66@rediffmail.com

Contact: 9810081383


International Human Rights Organization too condemns the SC attitude towards the RTI Act.

D S Gill
Chair IHRO

ihro.india@gmail.com

 

 

 

Superb

I really liked it? I respect you guys and wonder some time weather you are the same guys who were studying with me.

I always thought you are doing some thing but never ever expected such work with great foresight and dedication.

Please let me know if I can contribute some how. Again congratulate you for all your work

Take care and all the best
Bye. Take care and keep me in loop

Sachetan

 

I sincerely wish that the media publish your above letter which I doubt. Due to reasons not known the media is
not seen supporting RTI fully. They are not giving adequate coverage in support of RTI

With warm regards

Col N R Kurup
colnrkurup@gmail.com

 

Compliments for the bold and candid as well important and timely stand taken on SC shying away from RTI. I fully support your point.

Jugal Rathi

I find your petition to be unjustified in light of the constitutional separation of powers. The Supreme Court is the highest authority in terms of interpreting the laws of the country. If you want a decision of the Supreme Court to be appeal able by the CIC you are rewriting the constitution.

The CJI’s comments are within the purview of the constitution. If you want a decision of the CJI of he SC to be appeal able to the CIC, where then shall an appeal from the CIC lie?

This just results in unnecessary bureaucracy that results in burdening a legal system where justice is always delayed. Cheers!!

Prashant Kamalapuram

kamalapuram@hotmail.com

 

REPLY

Dear Mr. Prashant,

I think you have read the letter in a hurry and have also missed the news reports that have appeared in the press about SC recommending to the government to amend the RTI Act so as to exempt the SC from it partially.

Additionally the SC has suggested that an amendment be made so that the decision under RTI being taken by it should not be appeal able to CIC.

We are not saying that the judicial decisions should be appeal able to CIC. Please understand the difference between judicial decisions by SC and RTI decisions by SC. Judicial decisions by SC are taken by SC judges, whereas RTI decisions are taken by the Public Information Officers and there is vast difference in the same.

Best regards

Ronald L. Rebello

 

Very interesting. Thanks. you are most welcome to post directly on the “Hum Janenge” board that concerns the transparency law.

Regards

Prakash Kardaley

 

 

Dear Sir,

I strongly support the view and acknowledge my support. RTI is a major major tool for bringing accountability and reducing scope of subjectivity and baises in the public offices.

Keep me informed.

With warm regards,

Subhash C. Vashishth
subhashvashishth@yahoo.com

Advocate
Delhi High Court

 

 

Dear Sir,

Greetings!

Thanks for your mail and valuable campaign information. I appreciate for your action. We must condemn the double speaking of the Supreme Courts on RTI Act. Obviously judges are not Lords provided with any special exemptions. They are public servants meant to serve the public and are very much accountable to the people.

Thanks. Regards.

Gladson Dungdung

gladsonekta@yahoo.com

General Secretary
National Coalition for Human Rights
Kokar, Khorha Toli, Mission Colonly,
Kokar, Ranchi – 834001 (Jharkhand)

 

 

The language is harsh.

There also appears to be some misunderstanding. It is not clear as to what you mean by “SC has recommended that a decision by CJI under the Act should not be subjected to further appeal before the CIC” . Under the scheme of the RTI Act, CJI cannot take any decision under the Act at all. Presuming that an aggrieved appellant files a petition before the SC against the order of the CIC, decision of the SC therein has to be final and cannot certainly be a subject of appeal before the CIC again!

Regards,

Sandeep Thakur,
Mumbai.

REPLY

We do not think our language is harsh, though striking.

I think you have read the letter in a hurry and have also missed the news reports that have appeared in the press about SC recommending to the government to amend the RTI Act so as to exempt the SC from it partially. Additionally the SC has suggested that an amendment be made so that the decision under RTI being taken by it should not be appeal able to CIC.

We are not saying that the judicial decisions should be appeal able to CIC. Please understand the difference between judicial decisions by SC and RTI decisions by SC. Judicial decisions by SC are taken by SC judges, whereas RTI decisions are taken by the Public Information Officers and there is vast difference in the same.

Best regards

Ronald L. Rebello

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SC must acknowledge RTI

Posted by justicecorps on January 10, 2007

We condemn the Supreme Courts attitude toward the Right to Information Act,2005. The SC must acknowledge the importance of RTI in a vibrant functioning democracy like India and imbibe the values that it deems to uphold.

An open letter

 

JUSTICE CORPS

(Action group for Judicial Transparency, Justice Reforms and Human Rights)

C/o Add: 28 Sunrise (552), Samta Nagar, Kandivali (East), Mumbai 400 101

Mob: 9869 828 619. Email: justicecorps@gmail.com


“Nothing rankles more in the human heart than a brooding sense of injustice. Illness we can put up with, but injustice makes us want to pull things down”.

– Justice Brenan

 


To

The Chief Justice and all Judges, January 10, 2007.
Supreme Court of
India
New Delhi.

Subject: Supreme Court should not adopt double standards – on one hand passing numerous judgments upholding citizens’ right to information and on the other hand shying away from the Right to Information Act, 2005.

Dear Sirs,

We learn through media reports that the Supreme Court is not receptive to the Right to Information Act and the SC wants to be exempted from the RTI Act for any information which, in the opinion of the Chief Justice of India or his nominee, may “adversely affect or interfere or tend to interfere with the independence of the judiciary or administration of justice”. In addition, the SC has recommended that a decision by the CJI under the Act should not be subjected to further appeal before the CIC.

We are of the opinion that the above hostility towards the RTI Act of the Supreme Court amounts to double standards adopted by the SC, of late. In the past on numerous occasions, the SC has delivered many landmark judgments upholding citizens’ right to information and has even stated that the right to life as enshrined in Article 21 includes the right to information.

We therefore condemn this irresponsible attitude of the Supreme Court towards the Right to Information Act. We want to remind the judges that they are not Lords provided with any special exemptions. They are public servants meant to serve the public and are very much accountable to the people. In fact they owe much more accountability to the people because at least corrupt, derelict, inefficient, uncouth politicians can be thrown out by the people every five years during election time, but corrupt, derelict, inefficient, uncouth public servants like IAS, IPS, and Judges rule over the public for more than 25-30 years.

The judiciary must know that it too is being watched by the public and it too is accountable to the public, being one major pillar of democracy. Like bureaucrats who wanted to escape file notings, if the courts prefer to escape the Right to Information Act, then all the judgments of various HCs and the SC on right to information will be nothing but mere pontifications.

The present Chief Justice of India, Mr. Y. K Sabharwal and the incoming Chief Justice of India, Mr. K. G Balakrishnan, both have been supporters of the Right to Information Act. Mr. Sabharwal, in fact delivered a full speech on impact of the Right to Information Act on Administrative efficiency, Public Accountability and Constitutional Governance, in December 2005. Therefore, the present stand by the SC vis-à-vis RTI Act smacks of inconsistency and sends a wrong message to other Govt. institutions. For example, the UPSC and CBI and Delhi Metro too, for specious reasons want themselves out of the ambit of RTI. At this rate the good law itself will be defeated and it will be status quo ante deluvian.

The Right to Information Act is a tool to ensure transparency in every public functionary. Mere transparency in the functioning of the judiciary cannot compromise its independence and the SC should not feel insecure about it.

Stated frankly and Pro Bono Publico

 

Ronald Rebello Sanket Kashid Ganesh Sodaye Hemant Morajkar

Founder Co-Founder Member Member

9869 828 619 98699 46890 24032751 9819 4121 33

 

 

Copies to:

Minister of Law and Justice, Govt. of India

Dept. of Public Grievances, Govt. of India

Central Information Commission, New Delhi

All High Courts

University Professors and Students

Print and Electronic Media

 

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