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Parties don’t want to come under RTI

Political parties on Tuesday showed near unanimity in rejecting the Central Information Commission (CIC) order bringing them under the ambit of the Right To Information Act. While the Congress and few other parties rejected it outright, the main Opposition, the Bharatiya Janata Party, chose to approach the matter with caution changing their stand during the course of the day.

The Congress on Tuesday termed the ruling as an ‘adventurous’ approach that would harm democratic institutions. Similar views were echoed by the CPI(M) and the BJP’s ally JD(U), which also rejected the order passed by the quasi-judicial body.
‘It is not acceptable. We totally disagree with it. Such adventurous approach will create lot of harm and damage to democratic institutions,’ said Congress general secretary Janardan Dwivedi. ‘Getting political parties entangled in such unnecessary things will damage the democratic process. We simply cannot accept it,’ said Dwivedi.

The CPI(M), in a statement, said it ‘cannot accept’ the CIC order that political parties are to be treated as ‘public authorities’. ‘This decision is based on a fundamental misconception about the role of political parties in a parliamentary democracy,’ the statement said.
Criticising the CIC order, JD(U) president Sharad Yadav said it is ‘no way justified’ as ‘political parties are not shops. I fail to understand the logic behind the CIC order. There is already a Constitutional body - Election Commission - to which every political party is answerable and is bound to function under its directives.’

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