The Right to Information Act of 2005 has received much coverage in all media and is perhaps the government legislation that people are most familiar with. So what do you do if, for example, you want to know why there aren’t enough street lights on your campus inspite of a budgetary allocation? You file an application under the RTI Act. However, when it comes to actual implementation, not too many people are comfortable with the actual process.
The Youth Task Force aims at easing the process of filing RTI applications for college students. The organisation, set up in 2007, wants students to be aware of the RTI and its uses, apart from of course how one goes about actually putting it to practical use. The RTI Act can be used to procure information from the authorities for issues relating to infrastructure such as your canteen and roads to academic issues like internal assessments and moderation of marks. While the members of the Youth Task Force will not actually file the RTI application for you, they will guide you along in the process of filing one. They want to help “break the opaqueness of the system”, which of course is perhaps what the authors of the Act intended in the first place. In terms of more local issues, they want to bring about a little more “transparency in administration in North Campus”, according to Ankita, a member of the Youth Task Force.
The last issue that the YTF dealt with was the sometimes esoteric and irrational moderation of marks. Considering the fact that moderation of marks affects a large number of students across colleges and courses, this is definitely one issue that needs to be taken seriously by a large number of students.
The YTF is currently working with Awaz, another NGO that deals with students and the RTI, and based out of the Faculty of Law.