Introduction Back


As democracy requires an informed citizenry and transparency of information which are vital to its functioning and also to contain corruption and hold governments and their instrumentalities accountable to the governed, Government of India has enacted the Right to Information Act, 2005 setting out practical regime of right to information under the control of public authorities, in order to promote transparency and accountability in the working of every public authority.

The Act casts an obligation on the public authorities to publish certain categories of information. This handbook is being brought out by Central Bureau of Communication (CBC) under clause 4(1)(b) of the Act for providing all relevant information pertaining to the organization at one place to the citizens, who desire to have it. It is also available on CBC's website (


This handbook gives particulars of CBC, its functions and duties besides giving powers and duties, monthly remuneration, and directory of its officers & employees. The handbook contains information on decision-making process, norms set and rules, regulations etc. being used for discharging functions. Information on arrangements for consultation by the members of public; statement of boards, councils, committees of two or more persons constituted for the purpose of advice; Budget, plans and expenditure; manner of execution of subsidy programmes, if any; particulars of concessions, permits, authorizations granted, if applicable; details of information available in electronic form and facilities available to citizens for obtaining Information have been included in the manual.


In this handbook, unless the context otherwise requires: -

  • (a) 'Central Public Information Officer' means the Central Public Information Officer designated under sub-section (1) and includes a Central Assistant Public Information Officer designated as such   under sub-section (2) of section 5 of the Act;
  • (b) 'Central Information Commission' means the Central Information Commission constituted under sub-section (1) of section 12;
  • (c) "Chief Information Commissioner" and "Information Commissioner" mean the Chief Information Commissioner and Information Commissioner appointed    under sub-section (3) of section 12;
  • (d) 'information' means any material in any form, including records, documents, memos, e-mails, opinions, advice, press releases, circulars, orders, logbooks, contracts, reports, papers, samples,      models, data material held in any electronic form and information relating to any private body which can be accessed by a public authority under any other law for the time being in force;
  • (e) 'prescribed' means prescribed by rules made under the Act by the appropriate Government or the competent authority, as the case may be;
  • (f) 'record' includes—
  •     i) any document, manuscript and file;
  •    ii) any microfilm, microfiche and facsimile copy of a document;
  •    iii) any reproduction of image or images embodied in such microfilm (whether enlarged or not); and
  •    iv) any other material produced by a computer or any other device;
  • (g) 'right to information' means the right to information accessible under this Act which is held by or under the control of any public authority and includes the right to—
  •    i) inspection of work, documents, records;
  •    ii) taking notes, extracts or certified copies of documents or records;
  •    iii) taking certified samples of material;
  •    iv) obtaining information in the form of diskettes, floppies, tapes, video cassettes or in any other electronic mode or through printouts where such information is stored in a computer or in any other   device;
  • (h) 'third party' means a person other than the citizen making a request for information and includes a public authority.
  • (i) 'campaign' means concerted publicity activities through various means of communication viz. press advertisements, audio-video spots/programmes, printed material, outdoor formats and mass      mailing.
  • (j) 'empanelment' means panel of newspapers/journals, producers, printers and agencies shortlisted as per prescribed guidelines for undertaking publicity jobs.
  • (k) 'media plan' means a comprehensive publicity plan for creating awareness on a theme through various modes of publicity alongwith estimated expenditure.
  • (l) 'spots' mean audio-video messages/advertisements broadcast/telecast through electronic channels.
  • (m) 'rate contract' means rate for a particular activity for a specified period.
  • (n) 'client' means Central Government Ministries/Departments including Public Sector Undertakings and Autonomous Bodies under them, besides Newspapers/Journals, Agencies etc. empanelled with   CBC.
  • (o) 'outdoor publicity' means publicity through outdoor formats viz. hoardings, kiosks, bus back panels, banners etc.
  • (p) 'press advertisement' means an advertisement released to empanelled publications on behalf of client Ministries/Departments etc.
  • (q) 'printed publicity' means publicity through printed materials viz. posters, folders, booklets, calendars etc.
  • (r) 'mass mailing' means distribution of printed material to identified group of persons/institutions as per publicity requirements.

In case somebody wants to get more information on the topics covered in the handbook as well as any other information relating to CBC may apply to the Central Public Information Officer or Assistant Public Information Officer designated by the Central Bureau of Communication whose contact details are given in Chapter VIII of this manual. The procedure and the fee structure of obtaining information has been given in Chapter XVIII of this handbook.