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Central Public Information Officer, Supreme Court of India v. Subhash Chandra Agarwal: Right to Information and Judicial Independence

The citizen’s Right to Know is one of the significant ingredients of a democratic country. India demands transparent and accountable government to establish open and good governance. The sovereignty of India lies with ‘the people of India’. We choose our own representative therefore; it is our right to know about the machinery of the country. The need to control the mal administration of the government is important. Right to Information Act was formulated in 2005 which comes within the ambit of Article 19(1)(A) of the Constitution of India which ensures the fundamental right to Freedom of Speech and Expression. Many landmark judgments elaborated and clarified the concept of open governance. In the modern era, people are more vigil about their rights and they constitute the democracy. So, they expect the government to deliver. Central Public Information Officer, Supreme Court of India v. Subhash Chandra Agarwal, 2019, it was held by the Constitution Bench of Supreme Court that Supreme Court comes under the scope of “public authority”. Therefore, it is covered under Right to Information Act, 2005 (RTI Act). It is one of the landmark judgments which took a limelight in recent years.



“Information is the currency of democracy,” is very rightly said by Thomas Jefferson. Right to Information is the foundation of a democratic government. In India, democracy vests with the people of India, so we have a right to know. The Right to Information Act, 2005 was formulated which replaced the Freedom of Information Act, 2002. Privacy and RTI are related to each other. The government is accountable to the people in open governance system. In modern era, the people are more aware about their rights as well as their privacy. India’s legal system is formulating various statutes, acts and legislations to make the government accountable and transparent but the concept of privacy runs parallel to RTI. The law provides us the right to access the information held by government authorities on the other hand, the right to privacy ensures the confidentiality to access, collect and usage of personal information about them that is held by governments and private bodies. These two laws are contradictory and complicated.