National Current Affairs November 2016
India’s RTI Act Ranked 4th Best in the World
• India’s RTI Act is ranked the 4th best out of the 111 countries surveyed for a similar law. Mexico has now replaced Serbia as the top country in these ratings in the world, according to an annual rating of RTI-like laws across the world on October 2, 2016.
• India’s Right to Information (RTI) Act, that was passed in the year 2005, is widely hailed as one of the most crucial landmark legislations made after Independence.
• The non-profits. Centre for Law & Democracy and Access Info Europe, that work in the ‘Right to Information’ advocacy space, rate countries based on the quality of their RTI legislation, every year.
• The Global Right to Information Rating comparatively assesses the strength of the legal framework in place in different countries, regarding the right to information.
• At the heart of the methodology for applying the RTI Rating are 61 Indicators. For each indicator, countries earn points within a set range of scores, (in most cases 0-2), depending on how well the legal framework delivers on the Indicator, for a possible total of 150 points.
• The indicators are divided into seven different categories, namely : Right of Access, Scope, Requesting Procedures, Exceptions and Refusals, Appeals, Sanctions and Protections, and Promotional Measures.
Union Government Organised ‘5th International Buddhist Conclave’ in Varanasi
• Ministry of Tourism is organising the ‘5th International Buddhist Conclave’ from October 3, 2016 in Varanasi-Sarnath in collaboration with the State governments of Uttar’Pradesh and Bihar.
• The Conclave will include Presentations, Panel discussions, Business to Business Meetings between international and domestic tour operators and State governments, an exhibition highlighting Buddhist attractions in India, as well as visits to important Buddhist sites in and around Varanasi, Samath and Bodhgaya.
• India, the .birthplace of Buddhism, has a very rich Buddhist Heritage, with several important sites associated with the life of Lord Buddha which are essential pilgrimages for followers of Buddhism the world over.
• The International Buddhist Conclave is also one of the initiatives being taken by India as its commitment as the land of origin of Buddhism and to improve the experience of pilgrims as well as tourists wishing to savor the essence of Buddhist heritage, at the Buddhist sites of the country.