School of Media and Mass Communication (SMC), Beaconhouse National University organized a seminar on “Right to Information and its Practical Benefits.” Executive Director of Center for Law and Democracy, Canada, Mr. Toby Mendel was the key speaker on the occasion. Deputy Director, Punjab Information Commission Mr. Ahmed Naeem Malik, Mr. Iftikhar Khan from GIZ and Representative of Civil Society, Ms. Monus Kayenat from Center for Peace and Development Initiatives also shared their valuable views regarding Punjab Transparency and Right to Information (RTI) Act.
The Keynote Speaker, Mr. Mendel, while emphasizing RTI, said the Right to Information is a fundamental Human Right and a pillar of democracy. He further reiterated that it is mandatory to understand the hurdles in the implementation of RTI to address them effectively and efficiently. “Every country has its own information laws but these must never be used as an excuse to deny the public from their basic right of information”, he added.
On this occasion, Dean SMC, Prof. Dr. Taimur ul Hassan presented the souvenir shields to the guests. Dr. Wajiha Rizvi, Associate Professor at SMC, thanked the guests and organizers for arranging such an informative session. Mr Zaeem Yaqoob Khan, Executive Director Students Affairs and External Relations BNU, was also present.
Beaconhouse National University has always been an advocate of the RTI Act 2013. Previously, the university was involved in an RTI implementation project, funded by the World Bank and led by a creative cell formed under Mariam Dawood School of Visual Arts & Design. Under the umbrella of BNU-RTI project, different competitions, meet-ups and think-tank dialogues have been organized in Lahore, Faisalabad and Multan. Besides this, School of Media and Mass Communication (SMC) collaborated with Punjab Information Commission (PIC) for a productive Internship program to promote Punjab Transparency and Right to Information Act 2013 (RTI). This Internship program is sponsored by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) a German development agency. In this regard, SMC has organized multiple sessions in the past for its students where representatives from PIC and Punjab Government discussed implementation and implications of the act.