India

Name of law: The Right to Information Act

First adopted: 2005

Last modified: n/a

RTI Rating last updated: n/a

Introduction

India has long been recognised as an advanced country when it comes to the right to information, but its dropping ranking in the RTI Rating shows that global standards on the right to information have advanced considerably since India's law was first passed in 2005. It remains one of the top ranked countries in the world but there are several problems with India's access regime. Chief among these are the blanket exceptions in Schedule 2 for various security, intelligence, research and economic bodies. Instead of sweeping exclusions, these bodies should be covered and the relevant interests - security and law enforcement - should be protected by specific, harm-tested exceptions. The Indian legal framework also does not allow access to information held by private entities which perform a public function and several of the law's exceptions, including for information received in confidence from a foreign government, cabinet papers and parliamentary privilege, are also problematic.

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