A citizen has a right to seek such information from a public authority which is held by the public authority or which is held under its control. This right includes inspection of work, documents and records; taking notes, extracts or certified copies of documents or records; taking certified samples of material held by the public authority or held under the control of the public authority.
The public authority under the RTI Act is not supposed to create information; or to interpret information; or to solve the problems raised by the applicants; or to furnish replies to hypothetical questions. Only such information can be had under the Act which already exists with the public authority.
A citizen has a right to obtain information in the form of diskettes, floppies, tapes, video cassettes or in any other electronic mode or through print-outs provided information is already stored in a computer or in any other device from which the information may be transferred to diskettes etc.
The information to the applicant shall ordinarily be provided in the form in which it is sought. However, if the supply of information sought in a particular form would disproportionately divert the resources of the public authority or may cause harm to the safety or preservation of the records, supply of information in that form may be denied.
The Act gives the right to information only to the citizens of India. It does not make provision for giving information to Corporations, Associations, Companies etc. which are legal entities/persons, but not citizens.
However, if an application is made by an employee or office-bearer of any Corporation, Association, Company, NGO etc. who is also a citizen of India, information shall be supplied to him/her, provided the applicant gives his/her full name. In such cases, it will be presumed that a citizen has sought information at the address of the Corporation etc