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Sunday, August 30, 2015, Bhadra 15, 1422 BS, Zilqad 14, 1436 Hijr

Formulation of guidelines stressed for effective implementation of RTI
Published :Sunday, 30 August, 2015,  Time : 12:00 AM  View Count : 14

Right to Information Act (RTI) campaigners and officials on Saturday stressed the need for formulating guidelines or policies on RTI implementation for ministries and departments to help designated officers for providing information to the people smoothly.
All ministries, departments and agencies should formulate guidelines or policies for their respective organizations so that designated officers can easily provide information to the people, they told the handing over of information disclosure policies (IDP) at Bangabandhu International Conference Centre (BICC) here.
Management and Resource Development Initiative (MRDI) in cooperation with Information Commission Bangladesh and Manusher Jonno Foundation organized the function on the occasion of handing over disclosure policies on RTI for five ministries and departments. The five ministries are the Ministry of Land, the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Industries, the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education and the Ministry of Public Administration.
Speaking as the chief guest at the function, Cabinet Secretary Muhammad Musharraf Hossain Bhuiyan described the RTI as a new law and called for creating mass awareness on RTI for ensuring its effective and hassle-free implementation. "Culture of secrecy is hampering proper implementation of RTI. So, we should change our mindset playing proactive role in providing information to the people," he added.
There are nearly 15 lakh government officials in the country and most of them do not know about the Official Secret Act, meaning they are often reluctant to provide information to the people, the cabinet secretary added.  Demand and supply sides lack adequate knowledge and awareness on RTI, he said, adding both the sides should know and understand the RTI to ease its implementation process in the country.
Principal Secretary of Prime Minister's Office Md Abul Kalam Azad urged the government officials to disclose information on websites of their respective organizations proactively to meet demand of the service-seekers easily.
Information Commissioners of Information Commission Bangladesh Nepal Chandra Sarker, Prof Dr Khurshida Begum Sayeed, Secretary (Coordination and Reforms) Md Nazrul Islam, executive director of Manusher Jonno Foundation Shaheen Anam and Executive Director of MRDI Hasibur Rahman, among others, addressed the function with Chief Information Commissioner Mohammad Farooq in the chair.
Nepal Chandra said designated officers are facing confusion to provide information to people as they have inadequate knowledge on RTI meaning service-seekers are denied often to get information timely. Formulation of guidelines or policies will significantly help the designated officers to remove confusion and apprehension regarding disclosing information, he added.    ?BSS

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