What We do

State Level RTI : Kerala


Background

Until recently, Kerala had no comprehensive access to information law. The State Government did prepare a draft Right to Information Bill, which was released in 2002, but no action was taken to enact the law. Along with the right to information bill the Government also introduced the Kerala Transparency in Public Purchase Bill 2002, which was aimed at strengthening transparency in the administration of the government.

Significantly, in Kerala there has been a movement to establish the culture of transparency by using the avenues available to access information under the existing Panchayati Raj system (decentralisation process). Provisions facilitating access to information have been incorporated in the Kerala Panchayati Raj Act. (This was done in response to the recommendations in the 1997 Report of the Sen Committee on Decentralisation of Powers.) The Kerala Panchayati Raj Act provides for access to information from local self-government bodies, which are 1214 in number in Kerala. It provides the detailed procedure for applying for information and also punishment for withdrawal of information.

Law

In May 2005, the national Right to Information Act 2005 was passed by Parliament. The RTI Act 2005 received Presidential assent on 15 June and came fully into force on 12 October 2005. (For more information on the passage of the RTI Act 2005 and implementation at the national level, click here.) The RTI Act 2005 covers all Central, State and local government bodies and applies to the State Government of Kerala.

The Kerala Government has started implementing the RTI Act 2005. The Government has issued the Kerala Right to Information Fee Rules 2005.

For a list of Public Information Officers and Appellate Authorities designated by the State Government, click here.

Details of Fee & Costs

Application

Rs 10

Mode of payment

Cash/court fee stamp/treasury challan/demand draft or bankers cheque

Additional Fees:

A-4 paper copies

Rs 2 per page

Large size paper

Actual cost of copy

Floppy / CD

Rs 50

Print copies

Rs 2 per page

Samples /models

Actual cost

Inspection of records

First hour free, Rs 10 for each subsequent half hour

Second Appeals and complaints against non-disclosure of information may be filed with the Kerala State Information Commission.

State Information Commission Contact Details

T.C. 26/298, Punnen Road
Thiruvananthapuram
Kerala - 695 001
Phone PA to CIC  0471-2561623

Email: - sic@kerala.nic.in

Newsupdates, Activities & Advocacy

  • The Kerala Government's website on right to information provides citizens with detailed information on the RTI Act 2005 and its implementation in Kerala. The website details FAQsfees and various circulars and notices issued by the Government.
  • The State Cabinet has fixed the fees payable for obtaining under the RTI Act based on the fee set by the Central Government and the Government of Karnataka. The application fee has been fixed at Rs. 10 per request, Rs. 2 per standard page of information, actual costs for collection of samples and models etc.
  • The National Organization for Consumer Education and Research (NOCER-INDIA) works primarily on consumer rights issues, although their mandate broadly includes human rights and legal awareness. In support of their core consumer rights activities, NOCER-INDIA has also been working on right to information issues in Kerala. 
    For further information: Contact NOCER-INDIA at Payam -670704, Kerala, Tel 91-490-491475, E-Mail- nocermathew@yahoo.com

Resources & Articles

Government

CHRI

  • CHRI (2005) Forwarding Information Requests and Appeals: A Step by Step Guide for Assistant Public Information Officers under the Right to Information Act 2005, prepared by Mr Venkatesh Nayak.
  • CHRI (2005) Processing Information Requests: A Step by Step Guide for Assistant Public Information Officers under the Right to Information Act 2005, prepared by Mr Venkatesh Nayak.
  • For information on CHRI's activities in Kerala, click here.
  • For CHRI's posters on RTI click here.
  • For material in Malayalam, click here.

Miscellaneous

Links