Sunday, March 26, 2023

Weak vigilance

We all accept corruption is a cancerous disease eating the vitals of our social fabric, but almost all of us directly or indirectly encourage this menace with varying degrees. So it is no wonder that our state is tagged as one the most corrupt states in the country. Earlier it was only the public sector and its allied agencies that would breed corruption, boost favouritism but now every section of the society one-way or the other encourage favours against consideration (graft). Dishonesty and exploitation are as old as civilization. However, the grade of even handedness within a society depicts the real health of that social order. Religious belief plays a crucial role in containing frauds both in individuals and society. By the grace of God, we are extremely religious or maybe at occasions suffering from religiosity, but even then the inoculum of corruption lies and thrives well within the society. Anyways, without denuding more of deceit lying deep down in our community, let us look at what ails us as individuals and as a society that compels us to be part of the filthy cesspool of trickery. The faulty system and rules for delivering services, providing justice and misinterpretation of law and regulations are two main aspects that encourage the unscrupulous elements within the system of governance to misuse powers vested within their authority. The misuse is intentional and against consideration, and thus, the cycle of corruption gets completed. The process of corruption and favouritism is a long chain of political masters, executors, and beneficiaries. Political bigwigs most of the time patronize corruption to secure their political constituencies. The unethical moles in the system always on prowl exploit the situation to fleece the gullible and shower undue favours to hawkish materialists and shameless career hunters. Every administrative setup during the last more than two decades tried to wane away the people from corrupt practices and process of favouritism. Attempts were made to arrest corruption, but instead, the menace has turned viral. The social acceptance of corruption has made the situation worse! Both the corrupt and the victim feel no shame in carrying out the symbiotic process. Institutions like State Vigilance Commission (SVC) may have been doing their best, but the political interference and moles within the system make their job complicated. The deliberate incursions in guidelines and long drawn legal battles on occasions make these organizations infructuous. When mighty and powerful come under the lens they resort to age-old trick rather trickery-‘rules are for fools,’ thus making the investigations misleading and trials time-consuming. There are thousands of cases of corruption, wrongdoings, graft, favouritism, and nepotism either at the investigative level or in the trial stage and in most of the cases the accused are nowhere feeling the heat of accountability instead they enjoy the plum positions and corruption with impunity. The reason is either the deterrents against the practice of wrongdoings are less severe, or the conviction rate is low. We regularly hear top state leaders talking about eradicating corruption in the state to ensure growth and development. But the government’s battle cry against corruption will be incomplete unless it acts without favour or ill will. To strengthen the resolve to fight the menacing corruption, the government should brace its anti-graft teeth and weed out the moles in its system. To raise the red flag against corruption and nepotism, the government should compile a list of all accused whose cases are under investigation or pending in anti-graft agencies. And in the first instance remove them from the essential assignments or postings; put their trial on the fast track so that the innocents are saved from any further agony and the real culprits put in the furnace of speedy trial. Especially the pending cases in the State Vigilance Commission should be decided on day to day basis so that the authority of these institutions against corrupt practices and nepotism is not only restored but strengthened. The necessary amendments in law to restore the credibility of these institutions is must, otherwise this whole exercise becomes useless; encouraging the corrupt and their masters to have the last laugh.