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Analysis/Critiques of Bills, Laws

In this section you will find analysis and critiques of FOI/RTI Bills, laws currently being developed in South Asian countries.


CHRI welcomes the initiative of the Government of Sri Lanka of drafting legislation in order to guarantee access to information to the people. This is a timely initiative because most of  the countries in South Asia have adopted similar laws with Pakistan taking the lead in 2002  followed  by  India  (2005),  Nepal  (2007),  Bangladesh  (2009),  the  Maldives  (2013)  and  Afghanistan (2015). The adoption of information access legislation is an important step in the direction of engendering a regime of transparency in public affairs in any country. Where information is accessible to people in a timely manner, they can with engage their government to demand their rightful entitlements and participate in the decision‐making processes relating to their economic and socio‐cul...Read more
Posted By : Suchismita Goswami
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Posted By : Suchismita Goswami
    Access to information (ATI) is not simply a piece of legislation. A country’s passing of such an act signals a change in culture from one of secrecy to one of transparency, and a strengthening of democracy. ATI is the freedom of citizens to access information held by public bodies, and is quickly becoming a global standard, with the Maldives becoming the 99th country to pass such an act. The historic ratification of the country’s first ATI legislation took place on 12 January 2014 – five years after Transparency Maldives’ campaign for an effective ATI Act began. Members of the public participating in Transparency International Maldives workshops. But how and why is an effective ATI law so important for the Maldives? Free flow of information and democracy go hand in h...Read more
Posted By : Suchismita Goswami
Dear all, The Indian Parliament has approved the Whistleblowers Protection Bill (attached). The document containing the salient features of the Bill along with a comment on its shortcomings could be downloaded. The text of the Bill as passed by the Lower House two years ago is also attached. The uncorrected verbatim text of the debate in the Upper House is also attached. CHRI was part of the public education and advocacy efforts around this BIll.   The media reported that the Upper House did not make any changes to the Bill as passed by the Lower House a couple of years ago. There were some initial concerns that the Bill would be diluted on grounds of national security but that did not happen. This Bill was one of the last pieces of legislation approved by Parliament before the general...Read more
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Center for Law and Democracy comments on the draft Access to Information Law of Afghanistan. This is the latest draft law of Access to Information published by the government....Read more
Posted By : Suchismita Goswami
Welcoming the Sri Lankan government’s moves to enact right to information legislation, this critique of the draft Freedom of Access to Official Information Bill was produced by the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative in 2003. It provides a general framework for what such a bill ought to contain, section-by-section analysis of the draft itself and suggestions for improvement based on international best practice....Read more
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This preliminary analysis of the Maldives’ Freedom of Information Law was produced by the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative in June 2010, while the Bill was before the Social Affairs Committee for deliberation. Along with general comments on the bill, the submission includes analysis of specific sections and clauses and draws on international best practice to provide suggestions for improvement. Source CHRI ...Read more
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This preliminary analysis of the Maldives’ Freedom of Information Law was produced by the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative in June 2010, while the Bill was before the Social Affairs Committee for deliberation. Along with general comments on the bill, the submission includes analysis of specific sections and clauses and draws on international best practice to provide suggestions for improvement....Read more
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