New Delhi, Apr 9: Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh have differed in amending the Right to Information (RTI) Act.
In a letter to Manmohan Singh on Nov 10, 2009, Sonia Gandhi had said that there is no need to amend RTI act as it does not require any changes.
"The RTI Act is now four years old. Much has been achieved in these initial years and while there are still problems of proper implementation, the RTI has begun to change the lives of our people and the ways of governance in our country," she wrote.
"In my opinion, there is no need for changes or amendments. The only exceptions permitted, such as national security, are already well taken care of in the legislation," she said
In reply to Sonia Gandhi's letter, Manmohan Singh said he agrees with her on the RTI's effectiveness and how it is changing the way of governance, but there are some issues that cannot be resolved without amending the act.
"The Chief Justice of India has pointed out that the independence of the higher judiciary needs to be safeguarded in the implementation of the act. There are some issues relating to cabinet papers and internal discussions," Manmohan Singh added.
A copy of the letters were given to RTI activist Subhash Chandra Agrawal in reply to a query.
However, RTI activists across the country fear that amendments may affect the original spirit of the act.