Supreme Court Dismisses Petition Seeking Directions To Make The Court Available On RTI Online Portal
The Supreme Court has dismissed a petition seeking accessibility of the Supreme Court on the Right to Information (RTI) online portal to the public.
"It is a brief that the e-committee of the Supreme Court is looking into. It is part of a technical advancement undertaken by courts all over the country. We can't achieve progress from 0 to 100 in one go.", the Chief Justice heading the Bench also comprising of Justice Ravindra Bhat and Justice P. S. Narasimha said.
"In our view, the proceeding under Article 32 may not be the appropriate remedy.", the Bench said in its order.
The Petitioner-Ramey Krishan Rana had approached the Supreme Court seeking directions to make accessible the RTI online portal to enable the citizens to file online applications/appeals before the Supreme Court for obtaining information under the Right to Information Act, 2005.
"Are you a law student", the Cheif Justice asked.
The petitioner appearing in person told the Court that he has just completed his law degree and enrolled with the Bar Council.
The Petition, filed in the nature of Public Interest Litigation, had stated that manual/paper mode filing were an unnecessary expenditure, leading to clear wastage of human resources as well as public funds. It was further stated that all of this can be eliminated by bringing the Supreme Court over the RTI online portal.
The Petition had stated that "The process of physical filing of RTI has been gravely hampered due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and prompt necessity of RTI online portal has emerged and now in the light of the continued, severe impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is even more urgent that the Hon'ble Supreme Court be made available on the RTI online portal."
"This PIL is, thus, for direction(s) to the respondents to make accessible the Hon'ble Supreme Court over the RTI online portal so that the citizens can move their RTI applications for obtaining information through electronic mode and prefer RTI appeals electronically.", the Petition added further.
It was pleaded that the availability of the Apex Court on RTI online portal will lead the way for all High Courts and subordinate courts for making the Indian judiciary a part of RTI online portal.
The petitioner asserted that due to the severe impact of Covid-19 pandemic, it was even more urgent that the Supreme Court is made available on the RTI online portal.
It was also contended that the physical filing of RTI application to the Supreme Court made the filing process difficult and strenuous, resulting in a denial of access to information and justice.
"Pass an appropriate writ or order or directions to the fitting Respondent that in case the Apex Court cannot be made available over the RTI online portal of Government of India then in that event same may be designated over a self-contained portal for the Indian judiciary or the same be accommodated on the Supreme Court's website.", the petitioner had prayed.
The petition also prayed to equip the RTI branch of the Supreme Court with the present-day technology.
Cause Title- Ramey Krishan Rana v. Union Of India & Ors.