RTI Activists Request Appointment of CIC Chief

16 December 2015

Indian right to information activists have written Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi urging him to fill the now vacant post of the Chief of the Central Information Commission.

The latest Chief Information Commissioner, Vijai Sharma, retired on Dec. 2 after a six month tenure.

“This is the second time this year that the post of the Chief of the CIC is vacant and the Commission is headless,” the activists wrote Dec. 3.

When the previous chief commissioner retired on Aug. 22, 2014, 9 months elapsed before the selection committee picked a new chief. “This vacancy of 9 months severely hampered the functioning of the CIC and curtailed peoples’ fundamental right to access information as guaranteed under the RTI Act, 2005,” says the letter.

The CIC has seven of its authorized 10 commissioners.

“Given the mounting pendency of appeals/complaints in the Commission which as of today is more than 33,000, we hope that the selection committee will also make appointments to the other three vacant posts of information commissioners,” wrote activists Anjali Bhardwaj, Aruna Roy, Maja Daruwala, Nikhil Dey, Shailesh Gandhi, Venkatesh Nayak, Wajahat Habibullah, and Amrita Johri.

They also urged a more transparent selection process.

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