The term corruption is very common but it is difficult to give a dogmatic definition of it. Broadly, it is any dishonest or illegal or selfish behavior for getting any undue benefit. It has a special reference to those who occupy a position of trust or confidence but act in violation of generally understood or specified terms of behavior. Corruption involves two sides: One side trying to get some undue advantage by offering a quid pro quo; the other side extending or agreeing to extend that undue advantage by accepting the quid pro quo.
There can also be another worse type of corruption: One side offering to extend an undue advantage for a quid pro quo; and the other side tendering the demanded quid pro quo and accepting the offered undue advantage. In matters of corruption, it becomes immaterial as to who takes initiative, as the transaction as a whole becomes ABA monition a foul play. As corruption includes a behavior against the authentic norms and stipulations, it is against the interests of the society as a whole; and, which seeks to stealthily benefit a section of it.
As such, corruption may be defined: “A selfish, dishonest and illegal behavior of the persons in special positions, by offering something against the norms, for receiving undue quid pro quo, either directly or indirectly; and also includes the behavior of those who accept such offer and derive the benefit so offered. The fact who takes initiative is immaterial. ” Corruption and Society Corruption strikes at the root of social life. Any act of corruption invariably spoils the intention of the society that the advantages and benefits of social life should be hared or distributed in accordance with well-defined and accepted norms.
The persons who happen to be in charge of regulating such sharing or distribution are in ‘special positions’ in relation to others. Whether it is a vendor in a ration shop or a clerk in charge of reservation in a railway station or a minister who decides to whom execution of a high-profile project should be entrusted, – all such persons happen to occupy ‘special positions’ and are bound to behave impartially and in accordance with the understood or specified norms. When they do not follow the norms, they are liniments; when they do so for the sake of selfish benefits in return, they are criminals.
When an officer shows undue preference to a person of less merit and appoints him in a public office, he does injustice to the person, who would have rightfully occupied that public office but for his skewed behavior. The matter does not end Just between the officer and the appointee; the society loses the benefit of being served by a better person. So, the corruption is open disloyalty to the nation and its people. When a minister gets a bribe to 25% to the cost a project, tutorial its execution would be adversely affected.
The contractor would be emboldened to use materials of inferior quality; or he would employ unqualified persons; he would like to adjust the bribe paid to the minister, without reducing his share. As a result the people become the losers. The corruption does not end with the corrupt minister and the contractor; it harms the society. Nowadays it is very common for the politicians to have several businesses. Right from the contracts for keeping the sandals, shoes etc, in temples, to production of cinemas, or to business n cricket and other sports, the politicians have cornered a substantial part of all money-making activities in the country.
The stories of ‘rags to riches’ are very common among our politicians, who would claim to have sacrificed everything in their lives for the sake of the people; or to this or that language, or religion, or development of a region. There is nothing to prevent the politicians from engaging in any business but the problem arises only when they construct business empires in their names of in the names of beneficiaries, and misuse their special positions for it. A representative of the people, elected as a member of a political party and on the strength of its manifesto, makes money by offering his support to this or that person.
This is sheer betrayal of people’s trust. There is a law to prevent it but there are umpteen ways to circumvent it by these political specialists! This is corruption of a politician at the cost of the society. Corruption Spreads Like Forest-fire A few decades back, there was a general impression among the people that corruption was a shameful affair; though even then, many persons were corrupt, the people looked down upon them; and the corrupt persons felt bad at least now and then. In the post-Independence period, thanks to many of our ‘political leaders’, corruption has become a shameless affair.
Day-by-day, these leaders widened the areas of corruption and opened new channels to benefit their men’. They increased the number of participants and popularized the methods and showed by their personal examples that corruption is not something to be ashamed about. Once they came to power, they were able to strengthen their private groups and organize the ‘collection points’ very effectively. The fastness and efficiency with which they became filthy rich, was so impressive that the subordinates and even the public have had to change their opinions about corruption.
When a corrupt minister conducts himself nonchalantly, he becomes a role model to his followers. They now know that their leader could not be questioned by anybody. Narrate Pain cites a situation in Karakas State:l It is no secret that infrastructure projects in Bangor get much more land than similar or bigger projects elsewhere. These acquisitions allow for selective, high- ricer De-notification. The success of Bangor private patronage has encouraged rural politicians in the state to use whatever meaner they can to catch up.
Acquiring mining leases, and then denuding the natural resource without thought for the future, is a popular route to private patronage politics. The obscene riches generated in the process only set the mark tort other young politicians to aspire to cross. In any rarest of rare cases, if a politician is caught, he has a number of ways to escape. He can always say that it is all a conspiracy of his political rivals. Our investigation procedures and Judicial processes offer him many openings. There is no hurry. The case is not going to reach final stage for several years.
If at all he has to spend a few days in prison, he will be given a royal treatment there. Meanwhile, the political set-up may change to his advantage. All these things have changed the attitude of the people. Most of them have understandably come to a conclusion, that corruption has come to stay; that corrupt persons are invincible; that it is very risky and pointless to fight corrupt people; that it is wise to accept corruption as a way of fife and mind one’s own business. Next stage is that the people are forced to Join the bandwagon of corruption. Corruption becomes a mass affair. If a few people are reluctant to Join, they do not matter!
They are the losers! In spite of such participation of overwhelming majority in widespread corruption, it is necessary to do everything possible to eliminate it because sooner or later the corruption is capable of altogether destroying democracy. At a stage, the growth of corruption would spoil industries, educational institutions, press and Judiciary also. Dedicated professionals would become rare birds. Only the beneficiaries of corruption would be masquerading in the name of professionals. In many professional institutions the problem of non-serious students is increasing, thanks to political corruption.
For example, this year, the Charlatan Nehru Technological University has to bar nearly 5000 students from appearing B. Tech and B. Pharmacy examinations, for insufficient attendance. The prescribed attendance is 75%. These students have not had even 65% that can be allowed, after giving 10% relaxation on medical grounds! Several ministers, MSP, Meals, and other public representatives have given immense pressure to allow them for the examination. Senior professors attribute the growing absenteeism to ‘non-serious students’ getting admission in engineering colleges. Proof.
Charade Raw has said,2 “It is the non-serious candidates who resort to using pressure and involve politicians. ” The dearth of impartial officials can bring down the quality of public administration. The corruption among the elected representatives would spell disaster to democratic processes. Referring to the corruption in Karakas State, Narrate Pain says:3 Cornstalk’s rapid rise up the list of the most corrupt states in the country is commonly measured in terms of the astronomical figures that are popularly believed to be involved in specific acts of corruption, whether it is illegal mining, land scams or horse trading in Meals.
What these figures miss is the widespread acceptance of corruption. Politicians don’t Just buy votes; ordinary citizens think nothing of selling their votes. This large and growing gap between the legal and the morally acceptable has entrenched corruption deeply in the state. Run Nehru, former Union Minster analyzes various issues of corruption in India ND concludes:4 The situation in Karakas is chaotic as Meals are traded for ’25 core a piece. Two Congress and one Kanata Deal (Secular) Meals nave already resigned.
In this “tit for tat” situation, no party can claim to have the moral high ground! When financial mafia scores over political authority, all this is inevitable. We have seen similar scenes in the Northeast, in Shorthand, Ago and Andorra Pradesh as political families acquire financial assets which defy economic logic. The situation is no different in other states as this phenomenon cuts across party lines… There is no MIT to greed and someone in the system will, I hope, have the nerve to spill the beards!
Evidently, because of corruption democracy is weakened; when it spreads among the political parties and bureaucracy, democracy degenerates; when the business houses, including the press comes under the ownership and control of corrupt politicians, democracy begins to becomes devastative; when corruption spreads further and the people have to accept it, first reluctantly and then habitually, democracy becomes moribund; at this stage, people vote for illegal considerations and lose their moral right to question and correct the politicians.