We know that corruption will not disappear from society. Our efforts are meant to restrict corruption and to protect as much as possible the poor and weak in our societies. In the end all corruption costs are paid by the consumer and the tax-payer. They need protection.
The small corruption (peanuts, facilitation payments – allowed by the OECD!) do not cost much but are awksome to the public. It is less damaging in total amounts but it makes it difficult to understand why we fight the grand corruption if we fail to fight the small ‘bakshis’. Major corruption thrives on a broad base of small corruption-payments or bribes.
Corruption can happen anywhere: in business, government, the courts, the media, and in civil society, as well as across all sectors from health and education to infrastructure and sports. Corruption can involve anyone: politicians, government officials, public servants, business people or members of the public.
Corruption happens in the shadows, often with the help of professional enablers such as bankers, lawyers, accountants and real estate agents, opaque financial systems and anonymous shell companies that allow corruption schemes to flourish and the corrupt to launder and hide their illicit wealth. Corruption adapts to different contexts and changing circumstances. It can evolve in response to changes in rules, legislation and even technology.
Corruption in India is a problem that has serious implications for protecting the rule of law and ensuring access to justice. As of December 2009, 120 of India’s 542 parliament members were accused of various crimes, under India’s First Information Report procedure wherein anyone can allege another to have committed a crime.
Many of the biggest scandals since 2010 have involved high level government officials, including Cabinet Ministers and Chief Ministers, such as the 2010 Commonwealth Games scam, the Adarsh Housing Society scam, the Coal Mining Scam, the Mining Scandal in Karnataka and the Cash for Vote scams.
Public servants in India can be imprisoned for several years and penalised for corruption under the:
Indian Penal Code, 1860
Prosecution section of Income Tax Act, 1961
The Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988
The Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act, 1988 to prohibit benami transactions.
Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002
Punishment for bribery in India can range from six months to seven years of imprisonment.
India is also a signatory to the United Nations Convention against Corruption since 2005 (ratified 2011). The Convention covers a wide range of acts of corruption and also proposes certain preventive policies.
The Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 which came into force from 16 January 2014, seeks to provide for the establishment of the institution of Lokpal to inquire into allegations of corruption against certain public functionaries in India.
Whistle Blowers Protection Act, 2011, which provides a mechanism to investigate alleged corruption and misuse of power by public servants and also protect anyone who exposes alleged wrongdoing in government bodies, projects and offices, has received the assent of the President of India on 9 May 2014, and (as of 2 August) is pending for notification by the Central Government.
At present there are no legal provisions to check graft in the private sector in India. Government has proposed amendments in existing acts and certain new bills for checking corruption in private sector. Big-ticket corruption is mainly witnessed in the operations of large commercial or corporate entities. In order to prevent bribery on supply side, it is proposed that key managerial personnel of companies’ and also the company shall be held liable for offering bribes to gain undue benefits.
Widespread corruption may have roots in culture and history, but it is, nevertheless, an economic and political problem. Corruption causes inefficiency and inequity. It is a symptom that the political system is operating with little concern for the broader public interest. It indicates that the structure of government does not channel private interests effectively. The economic goals of growth, poverty alleviation, and efficient, fair markets are undermined by corruption. Corruption erodes political legitimacy and the protection of rights. Twenty years into the global fight against corruption, there has been progress in both policy and research, but much remains to be done. Attempts to measure corruption – imperfect as they are – have exposed especially corrupt governments and industries, spurring reform toward transparency and more ethical dealings in the public and private sectors, but most governments still receive failing grades on the control of corruption. Our goal is to further understand the circumstances that contribute to corruption and the policies that can help to combat corruption, but there is no one-size-fits-all anticorruption program.
I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.
If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.
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If you would also like to contribute to my website, then do share your articles or poems at firstname.lastname@example.org
We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.
We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge