TODAY -
Implementation of RTI, MRNREG, Right to Education Acts below par in state
Source: Hueiyen News Service / Basanta Thokchom

Imphal, November 11 2010: The Right to Information (RTI) Act, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guaranteed (MGNREG) Act and Right to Education Act, considered to be the backbone of national flagship programmes, are not achieving the targeted achievements due to insincerity on the part of the authorities concerned.

The Right to Information (RTI) Act is a law enacted by the Parliament of India in 2005 to provide the setting of a practical mode of the right to information for citizens.

The Act came into force in the state from October of the same year.

Under the provisions of the Act, any citizen (excluding the citizens within J&K) may request information from a "public authority" (a body of Government or "instrumentality of State") which is required to reply expeditiously or within thirty days.

To achieve the objectives of the Act, Manipur government set up a State Information Commission which is headed by a Chief Information Commissioner appointed by the government.

Each department of the state government has also appointed information officers in their respective departments.

However, information officers have always attempted to tamper information sought allegedly to conceal their misdeeds, an RTI activist lamented.

An order of the State Chief Information Commissioner issued recently, asked the Imphal east DC to impose fines of Rs 4000 each to be paid to two information seekers, M Maipakpi and W Joykumar for not providing information sought by them under RTI.

As the DC failed to pay the fine in violation of the order of the Chief Information Commissioner, the two applicants had even filed cases to the High Court against the DC for not obeying the order of the RTI commissioner.

Supreme Court and High Court had ordered declaration of assets of Judges of the courts.

W Joykumar, a RTI activist, applied for information about the assets of IAS and IPS officers of the state government.

But instead of providing the information, state department of personnel went to the Gauhati High Court seeking aid against providing the information.

The case is still pending in the court for a final verdict.

Now, suspicion of not getting the information is being felt by the RTI activist.

The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) is a job guarantee scheme, enacted by legislation on August 25, 2005.The scheme provides a legal guarantee for one hundred days of employment in every financial year to adult members of any rural household willing to do public work-related to unskilled manual work at the statutory minimum wage of Rs 100 per day.

This act was introduced with an aim of improving the purchasing power of the rural people, primarily semi or un-skilled work to people living in rural India, whether or not they are below the poverty line.

But like a contract work job workers seem to be working under the supervision of local MLAs.

The 100 days job guaranteed has also not materialized in some instances.

Many complaints of irregularities had come in the past including deduction of wages from the job workers.

The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act or Right to Education Act (RTE), which was passed by the Indian parliament on 4 August 2009, describes the modalities of the provision of free and compulsory education for children between 6 and 14 in India under Article 21A of the Indian Constitution.

India became one of 135 countries to make education a fundamental right of every child when the act came into force on April 1, 2010 .

Even though the Act has been enacted in the state, government is yet to make rules of the Act and set up state commission.

Midterm arrangement to look after the implementation of the Act has not been taken up till date.

On September 10, Manipur Alliance for Child Line submitted a 21 point memorandum to Education minister, L Jayentakumar drawing his attention to deliver the right to education to the children.

But the same is yet to be translated into work.


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