Bhutan passes RTI bill
In a noteworthy move, Bhutan’s Parliament passed the Right to Information (RTI) bill to curb corruption and ensure transparency in the government; nine years after India introduced the powerful accountability tool
Thimpu: In a noteworthy move, Bhutan’s Parliament passed the Right to Information (RTI) bill to curb corruption and ensure transparency in the government; nine years after India introduced the powerful accountability tool.
The bill, passed by the National Assembly yesterday, will now go to the council for review. Out of the 40 members present, 32 voted in favor of it, four abstained, while another four voted against the bill.
Speaking in Parliament, Minister of Information and Communications Lynpo D N Dhungyel said that the RTI Act in place would benefit the country’s governance system with better transparency and accountability. The Act would also help curb the issue of corruption, he said.
North Thimpu’s representative Kinga Tshering said that although he appreciated the efforts the legislative committee put in to come up with recommendations, he was dissatisfied the bill was passed. “Only about 50% of committee’s recommendations were accepted by the house,” he said.
Another Member of Parliament Drujegang Tsheza likened the law, at this stage, to a child and said it was unreasonable of members to express their concerns over possibilities of the child falling down when it had barely stood up.
India’s Right to Information Act 2005, that mandates timely response to citizen requests for government information, has gradually emerged as a powerful tool to its citizens.