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The Calcutta Court dismisses NRI doctor's petition for access to Government records under RTI
Dr. Saha need documents in the course of their investigation into a complaint against three senior Kolkata doctors. ..Read More
RTI- The Right to Information


US NRI Dr Kunal Saha's appeal petition helped to amend RTI act 2005-
Now NRIs and PIOs have the access to Government records


NEW DELHI, Sept 5, 2008
Sudesh Sharma

The Right to Information Act 2005 (Act No. 22/2005)[1] is a law enacted by the Parliament of India giving citizens of India (except those in the State of Jammu and Kashmir who have their own special law) access to Government records. Under the terms of the Act, any person may request information from a "public authority" (a body of Government or instrumentality of State) which is required to reply expeditiously or within thirty days. The Act also requires every public authority to computerise their records for wide dissemination and to proactively publish certain categories of information so that the citizens need minimum recourse to request for information formally.

Under this law, NRIs and PIOs were excluded from "The Right to Information Act 2005"

NRI Dr Kunal Saha launched his fight against medical negligence after his wife died in 1998, allegedly due to wrong dose/therapy administered to her at the hospital in India.

Dr Kunal Saha, who was denied information by West Bengal Medical Council on details of the medical treatment given to his late wife, Dr Anuradha Saha, at a Kolkata hospital, on the ground that he was not entitled to the same because he was not a citizen of India.

The Supreme Court today gave liberty to all overseas Indians to seek information from any public authority/organisation or institution under the Right to Information, Act, 2005, saying the right is available to all persons of Indian origin (PIOs) who have obtained the status of Pravasi Bharatiya.


NRI doctor Saha filed case at SC to amend RTI Law which discriminate NRIs

Columbus, Ohio, Nov. 21, 2007
Dr. Kunal Saha, M.D., Ph.D.

2002. Two separate but related criminal and civil appeals (for a compensation of over Rs. 144 crore, highest in Indian medico-legal history) for the wrongful death of my wife are currently pending for final verdict before the Apex court in India. People for Better Treatment (PBT), a humanitarian organization to help the victims of medical negligence, has been established in India where thousands of innocent victims of malpractice have joined seeking justice (Web: WWW.PBTINDIA.COM).

Although two doctors were convicted by the court in India for criminal negligence, the West Bengal Medical Council (WBMC) exonerated these doctors through an alleged "internal investigation" behind closed door. I filed a complaint of medical negligence to the medical council with supporting opinions from numerous medical experts from across the world. Without providing any details, the WBMC claimed that their own medical experts found no evidence of medical negligence in the death of my wife. After the RTI Act became law in India in 2005, I appealed to the WBMC to provide me all information of their internal investigation including the so-called expert opinions under the RTI Act.

I eventually had to move the Calcutta High Court (HC) since the WBMC remained silent. In a shocking judgment, the Calcutta HC dismissed my writ petition in September, 2007. Taking the side of the sinister WBMC, the Calcutta HC agreed with the bogus claim by the WBMC that since I am an NRI and a dual citizen (of Indian and USA), I have no right to obtain any information under the RTI Act. The SLP was filed yesterday in the Supreme Court challenging the mindless observation made by the Calcutta HC.

As the above discussion would suggest, this SLP has immense ramification for all NRIs, many of whom have become naturalized citizens in their adopted country of residence for a variety of reasons. NRIs have contributed significantly in the progress of modern India, especially in the recent years. Even though the NRIs may have permanent residences outside India, they are no less patriotic for their motherland than other Indian citizens who are living in India.

The hypocritical nature of the Indian government is obvious on one hand they encourage the NRIs to come to India and to invest in its development but on the other hand, NRIs are treated as a second-class citizens as they are not even entitled to obtain information under the RTI Act. This is clearly biased and discriminatory action against all NRIs including the dual citizens living abroad. As you can see from the attached SLP filed in the SC, I have asked the Apex court to denounce this injustice by the Indian government and clarify the RTI Act so that NRIs and citizens of other countries cannot be denied pertinent information by the government and public service workers in India. I urge you to bring this important issue to all NRIs living abroad so that become aware and raise their voices against this grave travesty. You can Dr. at Email:


Two seminal questions related to the essential principles behind the freedom of information are involved in this Special Leave Petition.

a) Whether the fundamental right to obtain information under the “Rights to Information Act, 2005” (RTI Act) is applicable only for selected groups of people based on their origin or citizenship status and

b) Whether non-resident Indians (NRIs) and Overseas Citizens of India (OCIs) could be barred from obtaining information under the RTI Act?.....READ MORE




About Dr. Saha