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CIC Wajahat Habibullah to join World Bank body

Sunday, August 01, 2010 11:18:40 AM, PTI

Chief Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah

New Delhi: Chief Information Commissioner Wajahat Habibullah, whose term ends in September, will join the Access to Information Appeals Board, an independent body recently set up by World Bank for disclosure of information on the lines of India’s Right to Information Act.

“It’s not an assignment but a designation given by the World Bank to me. The Board will have to decide on appeals coming to it once in a quarter, mostly through virtual medium like e-mails. I may have to visit Washington very rarely may be once in a year or so. I will be paid on the basis of hours that I put in and not on monthly basis,” Habibullah told PTI.

The Board has already started working from July 1 but the Commissioner will be taking charge only when his present term at the Central Information Commission gets over later this year in September.

“They have set-up a system for the access of Information which is similar to our Right to Information Act. The independent board is a panel of three external international experts which will be highest level of decision making body on the access to information,” he said.

The Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved the establishment of an appeals process that enables parties to file an appeal if their requests for information have been denied by the World Bank.

The Access to Information Appeals Board will serve as the second and final stage of the appeal for claims on the ground that the World Bank has “unreasonably or improperly” denied access to information sought, the bank had said.

Other members of the board are Daniel J. Metcalfe, currently working as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the Washington College of Law, American University, and Olivier Schrameck, a prominent magistrate of the supreme Administrative Court in France.










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