A Call to Campaign

The bain of all democracies is that few people are aware and still less care about governance, until they are directly affected; then it is often too late. That's how dictators seize power.

Even in "functioning" democracies, those entrusted BY the PEOPLE with governance roles instead of doing the job as representatives of people, arrogate to themselves perks and privileges of office as if they are entitled to these. 

Why do the people's representatives need to live in palaces, while millions of the people who elect them are homeless? 

Why do people's representatives need to have security guards paid for by people? Why would people harm their representatives? 

What is the solution? How may people reclaim their legitimate position in relation to their representatives chosen to carry out the tasks of governance entrusted to them?

The first step is for people to understand that their representatives are NOT their rulers. 

People should hence, assert themselves and launch campaigns in various areas where there is poor governance. 

Some areas readily come to mind. 

We may ask our representatives to implement various laws that have been enacted. For example, why is Section 4 of the RTI Act, 2005 still not implemented? Under the Act, representatives entrusted with governance are to give reasons for their decisions. 

Why is justice delayed? What are our representatives doing about delayed justice?

Why are many people starving? Many homeless? How long will it take to ensure that everyone has a home and none go hungry to bed? 

What is the point in talking about 8 or 10 % growth and patting economic performance when people are jobless, starving and without hope of a future?

Let's act BEFORE it's too late.

I invite the people of this great Nation of ours to join me in campaigning for our rights.


The ‘Times of India’ Bengaluru Edition today, 29 Apr 2016 carried a news report of our beloved MPs voicing “concerns” about misuse of RTI.

The headline said, “Resentment of political class towards RTI is now out open”.

It would be better to replace the word, “Class’ with the option in my title.

The link to the article is here.

NCP leader, Praful Patel, is reported to have said, “Anyone can pay ₹ 10, some ‘paanwadi’ (betel leaf seller) or ‘Chaiwala’ (tea vendor’ – our present PM, excepted!) can also ask who made a missile or anything about international affairs”.

“Patel Sir, please attend “Chai pe cherhcha”. “PM Sir, Don’t allow these fellows to fool you into diluting RTI as your predecessor tried. He is where he is because of that among other reasons.”

The arrogance of these gentlemen and ladies who adorn the hallowed halls of our legislatures is as sickening as it is unbelievable.

They come to us with folded hands begging for votes as their camp followers throw garlands at them to be thrown back and grabbed by fools to be preserved as talisman.

They pontificate that they are ‘servants of the people’, but their real color comes out when the shoe of hypocrisy they wear pinches as the nauseating facts of their misdeeds become public. So, RTI is the villain of the piece.

They do not realise that they are mere representatives of these ‘paanwadis’ and ‘cahiwalas’, and other such lesser, mortals. Oh, that we may have a ‘Desi’ version of an Oliver Cromwell, if nothing else for a short while.

“Government officials are scared of taking decisions because they wonder what will come out of RTI --- Objectivity is finished”, he (Shriman Patel) is reported to have said.

Let me tell him, “Sir, What will come out of RTI is the TRUTH, and NOTHING but THE TRUTH.

Transparency facilitates objectivity.

Officials need not be scared unless they have something to hide.

I too was a ‘government servant’ not too long ago. I had no hesitation in taking decisions and putting down my reasons in file notes (noting).

And, Sir, I was making missiles, so I knew who made missiles. If someone asks you, you are welcome to redirect them to me!”

Let us not allow

Refer Link


Politicos' resentment against RTI out in the open - Times of India


Fifth Estate Concept

There are four estates of democracy. These are: The Legislature, Executive, The Judiciary and The Press (now called, Media).

The legislature is the people’s representative body, elected by the people. The legislature legislates, lays down the law.

The Executive implements the law and provides government services.

The Judiciary ensures Executive compliance with the Constitution and laws.

The Press is to be a watchdog over the other three.

Unfortunately, the Press have become presstitutes, available to the highest bidder.

Hence, is the need for a Fifth Estate.

Movements, such as the “Arab Spring”, “Occupy Wall Street” are extreme examples of the Fifth Estate take over, sometimes successfully and sometimes not so well, the role of the Fourth Estate.

In this website which, is meant to encourage an active role for the Fifth Estate in governance, you will find views and constructive suggestions for action.

Visitors may post articles, comments, participate in chats, organize chat sessions, set up and take part in Forums and discussions therein. All this absolutely free. 

This is a tool for all those interested in how they are governed and how they may make the other estates of democracy accountable to them.

You would also find useful information on solution to problems people face due to deficiency in governance and other services.

All are invited to join the Fifth Estate to bring into India and other parts of the World, governments that are truly, of, by and for the people.

Welcome to The Fifthestateworld

Welcome to independent thinking and a distinctive world view.

How to use RTI

How to USE RTI?

In the editorial on Friday, 29 April 2016, I had pointed out how there is a move afoot to scuttle the RTI Act, which has become a thorn to most politicians. 

While people would certainly thwart any such machinations, it is also necessary to know how to use RTI most effectively. It is indeed the most powerful tool in the hands of the people to rein in their representatives as the latter strut around like rulers.

RTI shines the torchlight of transparency into dark corners where conspiracies are hatched for swindles and scandals of public monies. The argument advanced by some that RTI could and is used by certain applicants for blackmail is rather silly. Blackmailers could use any information regarding transgressions of any law, say, the mining regulations, for blackmail. In fact, some silence is often bought without the potential blackmailer's effort.

To use RTI for improving governance one must know firstly, the RTI Act thoroughly and then know what to look for in which are of government and what the objective is. 

The RTI Act has several provisions that one must be familiar with. The definition of "Information" must be clearly understood. The objective of the Act should be appreciated. It is to make Government transparent. It should also be anticipated that officials will attempt to delay and deny information, not only when they are corrupt, but also because the very act of seeking information sets them up to take a position of "We vs They". 

It is always useful to ask for copies of documents and request inspection of files. 

Most people are unaware that reasons for government decisions may sought. Sec 4 (1) (c) and (d) provide for this. These two clauses are the essence of RTI. 

Now, look at the objective of filing RTI applications.

First, the objective. For example, one could set up an objective as ensuring proper implementation of the Right to Food Act (RTF); or preventing corruption in building sanctions by Municipalities.

Once the aim is clear, the next step is to study the laws, regulations and rules applicable to the department and activity. Next, one examines the processes to see where corruption or inefficiency could lurk. For instance, in RTF, it could be in denial of BPL ration cards or delays in issuing these. 

One should ask for processes, responsibilities, manuals or laid down procedures, time stipulations, status of sample applications etc. One could ask for statistical information which would reveal efficiency or the lack of it. 

One could have the application in a tabular format to facilitate ease of reply as well as monitoring validity / completeness of replies.

RTI is sometimes like a cross-examination with adamant officials who are bent upon denial of information. It is a prolonged process and needs perseverance and meticulous follow up.