will corruption take India?
- By N.S. Venkataraman
The most disquieting aspect of the widespread corruption in India is the
fact that it is not anymore confined to politicians or the government
machinery alone. It is prevalent amongst almost every section of the society
at every level.
As the practice of corruption is a dishonest act, one has to think that
most of the Indians are dishonest, which could be different only in degree
between the individuals. As the reason for the dishonesty is greediness
and the desire to get things done at any cost one can think that most
of the country men are greedy and do not anymore think that the means
should justify the ends. This is not a flattering statement and many readers
would desire that it would not be so and such statement could have been
avoided. But, the fact is that most of the Indians are involved in corrupt
practices in one way or the other, either due to greed or due to so called
compulsion. In any case, the willingness to sacrifice for the sake of
not getting involved in corrupt dealings is conspicuous by its absence
amongst the most.
Today, if one would say that any particular Indian is honest to the core,
it could only be a case of exception rather than a rule.
The study of world phenomenon on corruption has repeatedly branded India
as one of the most corrupt countries in the world. Unfortunately, this
view has not disturbed most of the Indians at all and they do not seem
to care as to what others think of them; so long as the existing systems
and practices would allow them to make money and get things done in one
way or the other.
The irony is that India is still considered to be a very religious country
and it is still widely believed that the religion is the basis of Indian
life, thoughts and actions. This is obviously true, considering the fact
that there are hundreds of temples, churches and mosques spread all over
the country and they are all densely visited day in and day out by the
feverishly praying Indians.
Is not religious ethos contrary to corruption and dishonest practices
?The unfortunate situation in India is that those who call themselves
most religious are often found to have indulged themselves in dishonest
practices on many occasions. Several of the religious centres, of all
religions, are suspected to be steeped in nepotism, as such incidents
have been repeatedly published in the press.
It does not shock Indians anymore to know that not only the politicians,
ministers and IAS & IPS officers are corrupt but even the judges,
professors, doctors and NGO organisations are.
Corruption is not only prevalent amongst rich who are greedy in spite
of possessing enough but also prevalent amongst poor.
Now, what can be the future of the Indian society in such conditions?
It can be only frustration, chaos, unrest and even bloodshed in the not
too distant future. This kind of corruption in the national polity and
public and private life cannot go on for ever, without disturbing the
overall peace in the society. It is sad that those who are in charge of
the nation today do not appear to realise this and still are merrily going
ahead with their dealings unconcerned about the harm that it would inevitably
do to the larger national cause.
What is very sad and extremely disquieting about this country is that
Ministers suspected to be involved in murder. Chief ministers of swindling
crores of public money, senior police officers of molestation charges
are all living in comforts and enjoying positions, thus effectively exposing
the fact that the crusade against corruption has finally failed in India.
Even as the vicious cycle of corruption would continue with one swindling
the other, there could be a number of persons who would be left out of
this cycle due to inefficiency or commitment to the cause of truth and
such persons would be driven down to despair.
The incidents of history indicate that some of such persons who are out
of the corruption loop could take up the war against corruption at one
time or the other. But, they would find that in a corruption entrenched
system, they would not be able to improve the conditions and therefore,
a few of them may finally take to physical attack on corrupt and dishonest
persons, leading to violence and bloodshed. Security, dogs and mere police
rifles will not be able to beat down such determined crusaders.
The politicians and bureaucrats would call such crusaders as arsonists
or terrorists. But, history would judge them differently. There are a
number of determined isolated war groups already existing in the country
and they are generally branded as terrorist groups and treated brutally
by the state machinery, without investigating the reasons for their existence.
One would shudder to think as what would happen to the peace of the society,
if such groups would enlarge in size and number.
Those holding the positions of President, Prime Minister and Deputy Prime
Minister of this country and Chief Ministers of the states should have
the wisdom to realise the potential dangers facing this corrupt ridden
Indian society. They should not remain as small people who would compromise
with the aspects of good governance for the sake of remaining in power
for a few number of days more.