Even as former Chief Secretary Tarun Kanti Mishra took charge as new Chief Information Commissioner of the State Information Commission, he would face challenges such as making government officials attuned to RTI Act and ensuring disposal of cases at commission level at a healthy rate. Governor Murlidhar Chandrakant Bhandare administered the oath of office to Mr. Mishra in the presence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, Information and Public Relation Minister Prafulla Samal and other two Information Commissioners Jagadananda and Pramod Mohanty at Raj Bhawan here on Saturday. Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of swearing-in ceremony, Mr. Mishra said, “my first priority would be to create awareness about RTI Act among people. The new assignment gives me a rare opportunity to help out general people.”

An analysis of 2008-09 data from 38 government departments demonstrates that implementation of Act in Orissa has been mixed. A primary survey of 109 government offices in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack demonstrates that compliance with self-disclosure as defined under Section 4 (b) of the Act remains poor, with 10 per cent of public information officers surveyed able to produce information which includes all 17 points of self-disclosure.

Mr. Mishra has replaced the first Chief Information Commissioner D. N. Padhi, who was also a bureaucrat.