Millennium Post

Govt need to make request to enable foreign card payment option at RTI portal, says SBI

New Delhi: The State Bank of India (SBI) has said the Centre needs to make a request to enable foreign card transactions for making a payment on the RTI online portal.

The RTI online portal allows filing of applications, first appeals and the payment of fees under the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

Responding to an RTI query filed by Commodore Lokesh Batra (retd), it said the SBI payment gateway accepts transactions through foreign card (Masters/Visa card) issued by international banks.

"To enable this functionality at RTI online portal, DoPT (Department of Personnel and Training), Govt of India has to make a request to SBI to enable the functionality of foreign card transactions. After enabling the foreign card payment option, payment can be made by using foreign card, said the reply dated June 8.

Batra, who is in the US, has sought information on suitability/capability of RTI online portal, for Indian citizens abroad (holding Indian passport)/NRIs) for facilitating the payment of RTI fees and information cost using Master/Visa cards issued by the foreign banks, having payment gateway of State Bank of India.

"There is no facility for Indians living abroad to file RTI applications through the RTI online portal using foreign bank cards, needed to make the payment of information cost. Government must ensure that such a provision, which is already available with the SBI, gets functional soon,"

he said

Batra said the absence of payment option through foreign bank cards on the RTI portal is depriving Indian citizens abroad/NRIs from exercising their right to know.

The RTI online portal was launched in 2013 to facilitate filing of RTI applications/first appeals online along with payment gateway.

Payment can be made through internet banking of SBI, debit/credit cards of Master/Visa and RuPay cards.

Through this portal, RTI applications/first appeals can be filed by Indian citizens for all ministries/departments and other public authorities of central government.

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