State Information Commission
Under the terms of the Right to Information Act of 2005, the state government formed the State Information Commission, a quasi-judicial entity. As a result, official gazette notifications were used to establish State Information Commissions in each state. The State Information Commission is an important part of Indian Polity which an important subject in UPSC Syllabus. Students can also go for UPSC Mock Test to get more accuracy in their preparations.
State Information Commission Background
According to the Right to Information Act, 2005, states in India are required to create a State Information Commission, which must be published in the state’s official gazette. The State Information Commission is a strong, independent body that conducts investigations and renders judgements on appeals. In relation to state government organizations, financial institutions, public sector businesses, and other entities, it hears complaints and appeals.
State Information Commission Composition
A State Chief Information Commissioner and a maximum of ten other State Information Commissioners make up the State Information Commission. The Chief Minister serves as the committee’s chair, along with the Leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Assembly and a State Cabinet Minister who has been nominated by the Chief Minister. The Governor selects the commissioners on the committee’s recommendation.
They should be well-known individuals with in-depth knowledge and experience in administration and governance, law, science and technology, social service, management, journalism, and the mass media. They shouldn’t serve in the legislature of any State or Union Territory or as a member of the House of Commons. They shouldn’t hold any other lucrative positions, belong to any political parties, run any businesses, or engage in any professions.
According to a 2019 RTI amendment, the State Chief Information Commissioner and a State Information Commissioner serve terms of five years or until they become 65, whichever comes first. Reappointment is not possible for them. The State Chief Information Commissioner’s salary, benefits, and other employment terms must comply with the Central Government’s requirements (RTI amendment 2019).
State Information Commission & Term of Office
They serve in office for five years or until they are 65. The information commissioner is qualified for the position of state chief information commissioner, but his total term in office, including his time as information commissioner, cannot exceed five years.
State Information Commission Powers and Functions
Any person may file a complaint with the Commission, which must consider it. If there are sufficient grounds, the Commission may order an inquiry into any topic (suo moto power). The Commission can conduct investigations in civil cases with the same authority as a civil court.
Any record controlled by a public authority may be examined by the Commission during the investigation of a complaint, and no such record may be withheld from it for any reason. In other words, during the investigation, all public records must be provided to the Commission for review. The Commission has the authority to ensure that the public authority abides by its rulings.
State Information Commission Removal
The State Chief Information Commissioner or a State Information Commissioner may only be removed from office by order of the Governor on the basis of proven misbehavior or incapacity after the Supreme Court, upon the Governor’s referral, has conducted an inquiry and reported that the State Chief Information Commissioner or a State Information Commissioner, as the case may be, ought to be removed on such grounds. This is subject to the provisions of sub-section (3).
The State Chief Information Commissioner or a State Information Commissioner who has been referred to the Supreme Court under subsection (1) may be suspended from office and, if necessary, prohibited from attending the office during the investigation until the Governor has issued orders after receiving the Supreme Court’s report on the reference.
The State Chief Information Commissioner or another State Information Commissioner may be removed from office by the Governor by order, despite anything in subsection (1), if the SIC is shown to be insolvent; or has been convicted of an offence that, in the governor’s opinion, involves moral turpitude; or is, in the governor’s opinion, unfit to continue in office due to a mental or physical infirmity; or has acquired such financial or other interests that are likely to adversely affect his functions as the State Chief Information Commissioner or a State Information Commissioner .
For the purposes of subsection (1), the State Chief Information Commissioner or a State Information Commissioner shall be deemed to have engaged in misconduct if they are involved or interested in any contract or agreement entered into by or on behalf of the State Government or take any action to benefit from or share in the profits arising there from other than as a member and in common with the other members of an incorporated company.
State Information Commission Issues Associated
Like the centres, these commissions are overburdened with backlogged cases. The backlog of cases is expanding as a result of a lack of personnel and open positions. However, certain states don’t have any backlogs, including Mizoram, Sikkim, and Tripura. Even if there are irregularities, the commission can only provide information; it cannot take any further action.
The Central Information Commission (CIC) and State Information Commissions (SICs) recently received a directive from the Supreme Court requiring them to report on any recent developments regarding vacancies and open positions.
State Information Commission UPSC
The State Information Commission (SIC) performs judicial-like duties. A State Information Commission may be established in accordance with the terms of the Right to Information Act. State information commissions are essential for promoting transparency in government. As a result, they are assisting in the fight against tyranny, abuse of authority, nepotism, and corruption. Students can read all the details related to UPSC by visiting the official website of StudyIQ UPSC Online Coaching.