Subhash Chandra Agrawal
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|Subhash Chandra Agrawal|
10 January 1950 |
|Education||Bachelor of Engineering, postgraduate diploma|
|Alma mater||Anglo Sanskrit Victoria Jubilee Senior Secondary School,
Delhi College of Engineering,
Faculty of Management Studies
|Occupation||businessman, RTI activist|
|Awards||National RTI Award|
Subhash Chandra Agrawal (born 10 January 1950) is an Indian businessman and right to information activist. He holds the Guinness World Record for having written the most published letters to newspaper editors.
Early life and education
Subhash Chandra Agrawal was born on 10 January 1950 in Delhi to Om Prakash Agrawal and Padmawati. He finished his schooling from Anglo Sanskrit Victoria Jubilee Senior Secondary School, Daryaganj. He attended Delhi College of Engineering (now Delhi Technological University) where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science (mechanical engineering). He earned his post-graduate diploma in marketing and sales management from Faculty of Management Studies, University of Delhi. He wanted to join the Indian Administrative Services (IAS), but his uncle "forced [him] to join the family business, [and] crushed [his] dreams of becoming an IAS officer".
Letters and right to information
Agrawal wrote his first letter to the editor of the Hindi newspaper Dainik Hindustan about a bus conductor of Delhi Transport Corporation who did not issue tickets but asked passengers to pay for them. He then raised concerns about the irregular timings of the Taj Express with the Ministry of Railways. He had written 3,699 such published letters as of 31 January 2006, which is a Guinness World Records entry "for the most published letters written to newspaper editors over an individual's lifetime".
He has utilised the Right to Information Act (RTI Act) as a tool to combat corruption in India. The Central Information Commissioner brought the office of Chief Justice of India under the purview of the RTI Act after Agrawal's application. This decision was subsequently upheld by the High Court of Delhi.
Agrawal has been criticised as allowing himself to be manipulated by those with vested interests who use his expertise with RTI as a tool for their own selfish ends. His over use it is alleged hurts the system, also he is criticised for using RTI just to feed the media with stories.
Agarwal is married to Madhu Agarwal, a social worker who herself holds the Guinness World Record for having written the most published letters (447) in newspapers in a calendar year (2004). His wife and nephew help him by sharing their ideas. Subhash Agrawal reads six newspapers daily and watches news on television, but not cricket. He lives in Dariba, Chandni Chowk, Delhi.
- Pathak, Nilima (5 March 2011). "Harnessing the power of information". Gulf News. Dubai. Retrieved 9 September 2013.
- Sethi, Aman (8 June 2012). "Hard at work, the very special correspondent". The Hindu. Retrieved 14 September 2013.
- "Explore Records – Most published letters to newspaper editors". Guinness World Records. Archived from the original on 27 September 2013.
- "Lawyers welcome Delhi HC's decision on CJI office". The Times of India. New Delhi. Press Trust of India. 12 June 2010. Retrieved 14 September 2013.
- Jenkins, Cordelia (2012-06-15). "Subhash Agrawal: RTI crusader". Live Mint. Retrieved 23 November 2014.
- "Madhu Agarwal". Subhashmadhu.com. Retrieved 14 September 2013.
- "Guinness record for writing letters to editor". The Times of India. New Delhi. Press Trust of India. 8 December 2002. Retrieved 14 September 2013.
- "Subhash Agrawal". Subhashmadhu.com. Retrieved 14 September 2013.