Millennium Post

Kerala CM says all cabinet decisions won't fall under RTI

Maintaining the CPI(M)-led LDF government's stand against bringing cabinet decisions under the RTI, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Friday said information on all such decisions cannot be disclosed under the Act. Inaugurating a seminar on RTI Act, organised by the state Information Commission here, he said strengthening of the Act would help reduce corruption, which is growing as a threat to the administrative system, but all should be alert against its misuse by certain people.

The government would consider the Commission's proposal of developing a software connecting it with all other government departments and take steps to include RTI in the school curriculum, he said.

"There is no need to deny any information when it is sought under the RTI. It is not needed to keep information and documents under an iron curtain," he said.

"But all cabinet decisions cannot be revealed in that manner. If information on some decisions are revealed, a situation may arise that we cannot implement those decisions.

So its details can be provided only after implementing it," he said.

Those seeking facts under RTI should be able to differentiate between information which can be disclosed and that which cannot be disclosed, he said, adding that misuse of the Act by a minority would not be a hindrance for others to get its favours.

Vijayan's statement assumes significance as the LDF government continues to be under attack by RTI activists and opposition parties for denying information on cabinet decisions, sought under RTI.

State Chief Information Commissioner Vinson M Paul had in June 2016 directed the government to make all decisions, finalised by the Cabinet, available to the public under RTI and upload the decisions on the government website.

The CPI(M)-led LDF government had, however, challenged the decision and moved the High Court, which stayed the Commission's order in this regard.
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