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ADMINISTRATIVE LAW And Governance E-Governance & Transparency National Law University, Delhi Dr. Justice G.C.Bharuka 19 th Dec’ 2014.

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Presentation on theme: "ADMINISTRATIVE LAW And Governance E-Governance & Transparency National Law University, Delhi Dr. Justice G.C.Bharuka 19 th Dec’ 2014."— Presentation transcript:

1 ADMINISTRATIVE LAW And Governance E-Governance & Transparency National Law University, Delhi Dr. Justice G.C.Bharuka 19 th Dec’ 2014

2 Scheme of Governance Under The Indian Constitution We have a well devised Structure of Governance in the form of Constitution of India One of its fundamental features is that it does not confer power of governance on any of its three organs, namely, Legislature, Executive or Judiciary or any of their members like legislators, political or administrative executives, or the judges Doctrine of Separation of Power and the checks and balances envisaged in the Constitution illustrates the above fact One of the checks as mandated in Art.14 is that no public functionary can act in an arbitrary and / or unreasonable manner This can be achieved by ensuring transparency in public actions Aggrieved persons can approach the appropriate forums for judicial review

3 Transparency and Accountability Transparency and Accountability are two of the central pillars of good governance In the context of governance “Transparency” means sharing of information relating to services and policy making occasioning citizens participation Sharing of information leads to accountability Accountability means responsibility of adherence to rules and norms expected for performance

4 What does “Transparency” mean in the context of Governance? Transparency, as used in science, engineering, business, humanities and in a social context more generally, implies openness, communication, and accountability.opennessaccountability Open government is one of the doctrine of governance which holds that citizens have the right to access the documents and proceedings of the government to allow for effective public oversight Openness in government implies the idea of freedom to access the information held by authorities and that the citizens should have the right to see the operations and activities of government at work. Since reliable information is requisite for accountability, freedom of access to information about the government functioning ensures government accountability and helps in protecting other necessary rights.. In the case of Onkar Lal Bajaj v. Union of India, (2003) 2 SCC 673 Supreme court had cancelled the allotment of petrol pumps on the ground that the allotments made were arbitrary, on account of political connections/motivation and extraneous considerations - Allotment of 2G spectrum and coal blocks

5 Right to information – A Human Right Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says: “Every one has the right to freedom of opinion and expression and this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.”

6 Right to Information – A fundamental Right Article 19(1) in The Constitution Of India provides (1) All citizens shall have the right (a) to freedom of speech and expression;(a) (b) to (f) ; (b) I t may be a coincidence that Article 19 of the Indian Constitution also provides every citizen the right to freedom of speech and expression. However, the word ‘information’ is conspicuously absent. But, the Supreme court has subsequently declared that the ‘right of information’ is integral to freedom of expression

7 Supreme Court on ‘Right to Information’ In Raj Narain [(1975) 4 SCC 428 ] the Constitution Bench considered a question, whether privilege can be claimed by the Government of Uttar Pradesh under Section 123 of the Evidence Act in respect of what has been described for the sake of brevity to be the BLUE BOOK summoned from the Government of Uttar Pradesh and certain documents summoned from the Superintendent of Police, Rae Bareli, Uttar Pradesh. The Court observed as under: (SCC p. 453, para 74) “74. In a Government of responsibility like ours, where all the agents of the public must be responsible for their conduct, there can be but few secrets. The people of this country have a right to know every public act, everything that is done in a public way, by their public functionaries. They are entitled to know the particulars of every public transaction in all its bearing.”

8 Supreme Court on ‘Right to Information’-2 In Indian Express Newspapers (Bombay) (P) Ltd. v. Union of India [(1985) 1 SCC 641 ] the Apex Court has observed “ ‘Freedom of expression has four broad social purposes to serve: (i) it helps an individual to attain self-fulfilment, (ii) it assists in the discovery of truth, (iii) it strengthens the capacity of an individual in participating in decision- making and (iv) it provides a mechanism by which it would be possible to establish a reasonable balance between stability and social change. All members of society should be able to form their own beliefs and communicate them freely to others. In sum, the fundamental principle involved here is the people's right to know..”

9 Supreme Court on ‘Right to Information’-3 The case of S.P. Gupta v. Union of India [1981 Supp SCC 87] decided by a seven-Judge Constitution Bench of this Court, is generally considered as having broken new ground and having added a fresh, liberal dimension to the need for increased disclosure in matters relating to public affairs. In this case, the consensus that emerged amongst the judges was that in regard to the functioning of Government, disclosure of information must be the ordinary rule while secrecy must be an exception, justifiable only when it is demanded by the requirement of public interest. The Court held that the disclosure of documents relating to the affairs of State involves two competing dimensions of public interest, namely, the right of the citizen to obtain disclosure of information, which competes with the right of the State to protect the information relating to its crucial affairs.

10 Right to Information Act,2005 Section - 2(j) "right to information" means the right to information accessible under this Act which is held by or under the control of any public authority and includes the right to— (i) inspection of work, documents, records; (ii) taking notes, extracts or certified copies of documents or records; (iii) taking certified samples of material; (iv) obtaining information in the form of diskettes, floppies, tapes, video cassettes or in any other electronic mode or through printouts where such information is stored in a computer or in any other device; 3.Right to information- Subject to the provisions of this Act, all citizens shall have the right to information. 4. (1) Every public authority shall- a) maintain all its records duly catalogued and indexed in a manner and the form which facilitates the right to information under this Act and ensure that all records that are appropriate to be computerised are, within a reasonable time and subject to availability of resources, computerised and connected through a network all over the country on different systems so that access to such records is facilitated;

11 E-Governance Governance refers to the exercise of political, economic and administrative authority in the management of a country’s affairs, including citizens’ articulation of their interests and exercise of their legal rights and obligations. E-governance may be understood as the performance of governance by the use of electronic medium in order to facilitate an efficient, speedy and transparent process of disseminating information to the public, and other agencies, and for performing government administration activities

12 Why introduce e-governance ?  The purpose of implementing e-governance is to enhance good governance.  Good governance is generally characterised by participation, transparency and accountability.  The recent advances in communication technologies and the Internet provide opportunities to transform the relationship between governments and citizens in a new way, thus contributing to the achievement of good governance goals.  The use of information technology can increase the broad involvement of citizens in the process of governance at all levels by providing the possibility of on-line discussion groups and by enhancing the rapid development and effectiveness of pressure groups.  Thus the government may provide better service in terms of time, making governance more efficient and more effective.  In addition, the transaction costs can be lowered and government services become more accessible.

13 E-Governance Initiatives in India Over the years, a large number of initiatives have been undertaken by various State Governments and Central Ministries to usher in an era of e-Government. Sustained efforts have been made at multiple levels to improve the delivery of public services and simplify the process of accessing them. The National e-Governance Plan (NeGP), takes a holistic view of e-Governance initiatives across the country, integrating them into a collective vision, a shared cause. Around this idea, a massive countrywide infrastructure reaching down to the remotest of villages is evolving, and large-scale digitization of records is taking place to enable easy, reliable access over the internet. The ultimate objective is to bring public services closer home to citizens, as articulated in the Vision Statement of NeGP.The National e-Governance Plan (NeGP)

14 Mission Mode Projects Under theNational e-Governance Plan (NeGP)concept of mission mode project (MMP) has been devised witch focuses on fundamental aspects of electronic governance, such as banking, land records or commercial taxes etc. Within NeGP, "mission mode" implies that projects have clearly defined objectives, scopes, and implementation timelines and milestones, as well as measurable outcomes and service levels. NeGP comprises 31 mission mode projects (MMPs), which are further classified as state, central or integrated projects. Each state government can also define five MMPs specific to its individual needs.

15 E-Governance In Indian Legal System


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