RTI not at odds with national security: CRIT

ISLAMABAD: It seems there is relative lack of understanding about the purpose of right to information legislation in government circles as demonstrated by the interior minister on Sunday when he said that no one will be allowed to hide behind the Right to Information Act.

This was stated in a press release issued by Coalition on Right to Information, (CRTI) a consortium of 48 civil society organisations working to protect and promote citizens’ right to information in the country.

Effective right to information laws not only facilitate easy and cost-effective access to information held by public bodies but also protect privileged and sensitive information from disclosure.

That is why independent and autonomous information commissions are established under right to information laws to ensure that information likely to cause damage to the national security, privacy of individuals, economic interests and other such matters is protected from disclosure.

Moreover, information commissions ensure that information is disclosed only in public interest. It is unfortunate that the federal government has not empowered proposed Pakistan Information Commission, to be established under Right of Access to Information Bill, 2016, to ensure that sensitive information is protected and information pertaining to matters of public importance is shared with citizens and journalists in public interest.

The CRTI urges the federal government to empower proposed Pakistan Information Commission with regard to ensuring disclosure of information in matters of public interest and protecting sensitive information.

CHARSADDA: Inspector General of Police Nasir Durrani said on Thursday the establishment of a model police station in the province reflected the real change in thinking, behaviour and priorities of the police.  The inspector general of police (IGP) said this in his address on the occasion of the inaugural ceremony of Model Police Station Sardheri here.  Elected representatives, including MNA Maulana Syed Gohar Shah, District Nazim Fahad Riaz, elite of the area, and high ranking civil and police officers attended the function. The IGP pointed out that establishment of Model Police Station was the need of the hour.

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