Public awareness of the Right to Information Act is not adequate, according to State Information Commission chief K.S. Sripathi.

Inaugurating a workshop on the Right to Information Act 2005, he said though the awareness level in Tamil Nadu was better compared to other States, it was not adequate.

Expressing concern over frivolous complaints being filed before the authorities, he said: “The Public Information Officer (PIO) or public authority can give information available in records. One cannot ask or compel the PIO to get information on what is not available or information that cannot be given. The PIO and State Information Commission are not forums meant for solving problems of applicants.”

Advising applicants to desist from sending their applications directly to the State Information Commission, he said as per the Act an applicant could approach the PIO first and then appellate authority. If applicants failed to obtain the required information from them, they could file a second appeal before the State information Commission.