Right to Information

Nearly 80% of Punjab Govt. Departments’ Websites Have RTI Category

Over 60% of Public Bodies in Punjab Publish Contact Details of PIOs on Website

Sahiwal, Punjab: As part of compliance with the Punjab Transparency and Right to Information Act, 2013, nearly 80% of provincial departments in Punjab have included a dedicated category of Right to Information on their websites.

Out of 43 provincial public bodies in Punjab, 33 have included the RTI category on their websites, which provides basic information about the department as required under the Section 4 of the Punjab Transparency and Right to Information Act, 2013 commonly known as RTI Act.

However, ten departments do not have RTI categories on their websites.

The departments who do not have RTI category on their website includes Board of Revenue, Tourism Department, Services and General Administration Department, Home Department.

The inclusion of RTI categories on government websites provides citizens with easy access to essential information, such as details about the department’s functions, policies, and procedures. By making this information publicly available, citizens can obtain a better understanding of government activities and hold public officials accountable for their actions.

Additionally, only 62% of public bodies have included contact details of their designated Public Information Officers (PIOs) as required under Section 7 of the RTI Act.

The inclusion of contact details for designated PIOs on government department websites facilitates direct communication between citizens and the relevant officer, streamlining the process of acquiring information. This step enables citizens to request and obtain information from government officials quickly, without going through bureaucratic hurdles.

Seven public bodies with RTI categories on their websites do not have PIO details listed.

It is essential for all public bodies to ensure that they comply with the RTI Act’s provisions and include RTI categories and contact details of designated PIOs on their websites. By doing so, they will increase transparency and accountability in government operations and promote trust between the government and citizens.

RTI Activists appraised the efforts of Punjab Information Commission to ensure the proactive disclosure of the information on the website of the departments. Activists demand the Commission to ensure such implementation at district level as well.

Saddia Mazhar

Saddia Mazhar, an accomplished Investigative Journalist hailing from District Sahiwal, Punjab, possesses a fervor for unveiling impactful narratives. With a demonstrated history of hosting radio shows, web TV programs, contributing to esteemed publications, and steering digital media platforms, she stands as a notable figure in the field. Connect with her on Twitter @SaddiaMazhar. She can be contacted at thesaddia@gmail.com
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