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Explain policy on political leaders' faces in govt ads: CIC

The Central Information Commission (CIC) has asked the government to pro-actively disclose its policy on use of photographs of political leaders on advertisements.



New Delhi: The Central Information Commission (CIC) has asked the government to pro-actively disclose its policy on use of photographs of political leaders on advertisements.

Noting that the government has an obligation under Section IV of the RTI Act to pro-actively disclose its policy on such advertisements which bear photographs of political leaders, Information Commissioner Sridhar Acharyulu has asked when it would start implementing it.

And, as campaigning is taken up in full swing for the Delhi Assembly polls, he also directed the Chief Secretary of Delhi to explain the proposed steps for implementing the recommendations of the Lokayukta of Delhi for "effectively preventing photo publicity of their political rulers".

"Especially when elections are almost happening every year regularly in one region or the other, with one in Delhi now, the government has to expedite the disclosure and that policy should be duly publicised otherwise through advertisements," Acharyulu said.

He directed the Centre, which now governs NCR-Delhi, to disclose its policy on the recommendations of the Prof Madhava Menon Committee and Lokayukta of Delhi regarding use of photos of political leaders on various advertisements issued by the government for which the expenditure is borne by the taxpayer.

Acharyulu said that the disclosure would be in the "best interests of democracy and (would be a) proper representation to the people before they exercise their franchise".

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