Before 21st June, 2005, in India it was the special privilege of Member of Parliaments (For central agencies) or Member of Legislative Assembly (For State agencies) to ask questions relating to ‘public interest’ and concerned Minister had to answer them accordingly on the floor of the House with utmost responsibility, either in written or verbal. The MPs and MLAs could ask information about any particular government file, document, paper or details of any event or transaction. In that era the general public was not allowed to touch the Govt. files and there was specific bar to raise any voice at the pace with which any Govt. department works (unless there is an intervention by the Hon’ble Courts taking cognizance on any Public Interest Litigation).

But after the enactment of the Right to Information Act, 2005, the special right to ask for information, has been extended to general public. Now the general public can freely ask questions on subjects which touch their life or the betterment of the society. Now anyone can ask question about the halted projects in their neighborhood, or the information related to number of foreign trips taken by the President of India during last year.

In this league the most significant step taken by the Central Government, and some States, is ‘Online filing of the RTI Application’ at website . At this website you can file RTI Application to any central agency/ministry/department. The procedure is so simple that application fee of Rs. 10/- (ten) can be paid online using credit/debit card or net-banking. The submitted application generates instant acknowledgement and the action on the same starts on the same day (working hours). The additional fee also can be submitted online. In case of denial of information or any deficiency in the information, the Appeal can also be filed online using the ‘Appeal’ link provided on this website, and in case of Second Appeal (or complaint) the applicant can approach the Central Information Commission at, that too online. The reply or disposal of Appeal is also provided through email as well as through registered letter with SMS updates.

Though the website is very user friendly but the user should try to use it very carefully e.g not to use special characters like “ ‘ ; # etc. this may cause error in submission of application. Though it is not required, but the user should also tell a brief about the purpose behind making the application and it should reflect some larger public interest. This would help you at a later stage of Appeal or Complaint.

So, members, visit this website and freely ask for information and documents instead of facing the hardship of finding the address of PIO, buying postal orders from post office for fee payment or printing/filling up the application form.