Corruption is the biggest known threat to any nation. Democracy is one of the better methods of administration. Democracy gives immense power to the common man, he has the power to select a representative and send to the law making house. By The People, Of The People and For The People is a great concept. Democracy denotes freedom of expression and movement. But there is always a dark side to the coin.
India is a democratic country and we are represented by politicians in the temple of democracy named parliament. Power makes people corrupt, corruption is an addiction and de addiction is tough since the enjoyment of being corrupt is way too much above the pleasure of any other addiction. Money matters, the effortless earnings will always reduce the value of the earned treasure and will contribute to the greed element drastically. Result, the corrupt will become more corrupt and more greedy.
Can we blame the politicians for everything and release ourselves from all the charges? Knowingly or unknowingly we are also part of the corruption. We are electing the representatives, we have the power to do it. I have heard the argument that all are corrupt and we had to vote for one of them. The question is can you declare that you have voted for the least corrupt? No way, if that was the case we will not see the most corrupt politicians back in power.
Our great nation has many more factors to consider while sending a representative. Unfortunately the history of corruption of that candidate is not the prime factor. We have to select the one from our cast, he should belongs to the same language group I speak and he should try to get all the goodies from the government to me. Whether its a BPL status or 10 KG of rice or wheat per month free. The point is if a corrupt politician is having followers it cannot be just political orientation, he must be sharing the bread he earned to the pack, or atleast he may be giving them hope of that share.
The neutral human nature is greed! Imagine that you saw a Rs 500 currency on the way to home, how many of them will take and give it to the police or any authority? Pretty less! Isn’t it? We even claim that, if I give it to the police they will share it themselves so I decided to take it. The argument is funny everyone is corrupt so why should I stay away? Or some even claim that I cannot bring a change alone.
Responding to a demand of bribe may delay your service, the officers may ask you more documents. But they cannot ask anything beyond the law. But the demands within the law can create inconvenience. So we are ready to bribe to skip certain procedures . So bribing is a short cut to difficult tasks. How can we address the issue of corruption just with a law?
Justice may be served to everyone in every case. But the fact remains that the time and money needed to reach the justice is long and huge respectively, may not be affordable for everyone.
Lets take an example.
I need a residential certificate from the local body to apply for a passport, there must be some documents required to get it, if I am not lucky enough the procedure may take several days. Imagine the certificate is just proving that I am living in a particular place. So if I am employed and I don’t have time to spend in a government office I may prefer to depend an agent or bribe directly. The bribe may reduce the time and documents required. And I may get a quicker service.
The issue is, I have jumped a queue, I got things without fulfilling the requirement and the officer earned some money. The bigger crime is the injustice to the person standing before me in the queue, he may not be rich enough to bribe. And the prescribed requirements are not verified at all. Which can be seriously dangerous in some cases.
Modernisation of the governance system is the only solution, there must be a kiosk to get all such primary certificates. The departments should share the data of beneficiaries, that will remove the need of many certificates. The unified Identification number may solve the issue of identification of beneficiaries in many cases. That will also reduce the scope of manipulating the list of qualified beneficiaries.
I was talking about the bribe in the lower level, it is just the micro entity of corruption. We cannot skip politicians while we talk about corruption.
The blind political affiliation of people is saving such corrupt leaders. We have to decide that a corrupt leader will not get my vote again, we should not limit our thoughts within the constrains of politics. The opposition of every government will claim that they are different. But the time has proved other ways.
I recently heard an interesting point from a debate on corruption, leaders try to bring their family to politics, and we will see the birth of new leaders. How do they get a chance to groom their wives or children into politics? Some of the leaders are in power for many years and the time is enough for them to push the children up, I am not saying that all the youngsters of the older leaders are bad or corrupt, they may come out with better ideas. Still we may witness an effort to change the governance to a family affair. What is the solution? We cannot demand forbidding all the family members of a leader to politics. That is ridiculously nonsense. We should have a law to restrict a person from contesting the elections for a second time after completion of one tenure. That will bring new faces and reduce the chances of scams, the new person will take some time to learn the scopes of corruption and may not succeed executing one in his five years.
I am not trying to reduce the truthfulness of the campaign against corruption lead by Sri Anna hazare, but I afraid its lacking direction and we cannot isolate every politician from policy making. The politicians are not aliens they are just representatives of us. If we don’t need them push them out in an election and bring better people, why can’t we support a young dynamic independent leader in an election even after having big complaints about the politicians?
The corruption is a reality and it cannot be solved without the effort of the people, but the effort should not end up in making people mistrustful about the system. Lets join hand together for a campaign to modernise the governance and lets stand together to expose the corrupt from the grass root level. Lets take a pledge not to give or take a bribe. If we can change the reality on the root level we can easily tackle the gargantuan leaders at the top.
The struggle for independence and fight against corruption cannot be compared, just because we have a democratic government now and the government has to follow the law and procedures currently existing in this nation. We have all rights to demand but we should give the government a space to breath as it is not free from the prevailing laws. We have to understand the limitation of a government while its being slow in responding to demands. The power of people should not be spoiled by travelling in wrong paths. So we have to rethink and reconstitute our plans, and I suggest a change from the home instead of calling all others bad.