An overview on Corruption: A Menace in India

Rishabh Gupta

(ICFAI Law School)

Everyone censures corruption at a societal stage but that doesn’t mean that anyone has escaped from the flu of corruption. it’s not an infection in one country. People worldwide are involved within the act of corruption. India is not any exception thereto. Corruption in India has even crossed the alarming stage. From the officials of the very best rank to a peon most are corrupt.

It is a term known to all or any folks precisely meaning an illegal, immoral or unauthorized act wiped out due course of employment. But literally it means “Inducement (as of a public official) by improper means (as bribery) to violate duty (as by committing a felony)”.

Corruption may be a termite in every system. Once it enters the system, it goes on increasing. Today it’s rampant and has gradually become routine. Worldwide, bribery alone is estimated to involve over 1 trillion US dollars annually.

This shows how big a drag is corruption. it’s indeed the most important challenge ahead of any government because the system itself is handicapped as its own employees are slaves of another. within the author’s view corruption is that the root explanation for all other problems that a rustic face. allow us to check out it with regard to India. Many big problems like poverty, unemployment, illiteracy, pollution, external threats, underdevelopment etc. are posed ahead of the Indian government. But having a glimpse in the least these problems faced by India, one might notice that corruption plays a crucial role in making these problems even bigger. India remains facing poverty thanks to corruption.

The government and its employees all are corrupt therefore the schemes floated by the govt for the betterment of poor aren’t properly implemented and simply because corruption comes into play the grant advanced to the poor doesn’t reach them and that they remain an equivalent then does the matter of poverty. an equivalent principle applies to the matter of external threats. India’s neighbouring countries also are a threat to the country and its sovereignty. due to the officials or maybe citizens being corrupt either for his or her personal gain or enmity towards their home country the neighbours convince be even more dangerous. Such officials may leak important information to the neighbours which provides them a whip hand. an equivalent was hinted post 26/11 attack in India. consistent with the sources the attack couldn’t are possible without the assistance of the insiders.

Corruption isn’t just limited to administration. it’s considerably prevalent even in legislation and judiciary such a lot in order that it’s probably the most important challenge and wishes to be eradicated from its grass root. For an equivalent purpose the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 has been enacted.

This Act incorporated the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1947, the legal code Amendment Act, 1952, and sec. 161 to 165-A of the Indian legal code. The Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, thereby widened the coverage, strengthened the provisions and made them simpler .

This Act especially defines the act of bribery, prescribes its punishment and also deals with the intricacies of law like appointment of special judges, their powers, summarily triable cases etc.

The Act describes, defines, discriminates different forms and stages of corruption and prescribes punishment for an equivalent . Under Section 7 of the Act, any employee expecting or accepting any gratification aside from his legal remuneration from a person to favour or disfavour or service or disservice the other person shall be punishable with imprisonment not but 6 months but may reach 5 years and also with fine.

Section 8 deals with the cases of employee s accepting gratification by illegal means to influence public servant. an equivalent provision prescribes punishment up to five years imprisonment and fine. the utmost punishment prescribed under the Act is up to seven years imprisonment and fine under Section 14 that deals with those habitual of getting involved within the act of corruption in one or the opposite way.

Under this provision any employee committing an act of: –
1. Accepting gratification by illegal means to influence employee as addressed under Section 8 or
2. Taking gratification for exercise of private influence as dealt under Section 9 or
3. Act of abetment of an offence under sections 7 or 11 as prescribed under Section 12 is punishable with the punishment prescribed.

The Act has been alright enacted to ascertain thereto that the conviction rate shouldn’t be very less thanks to legal intricacies coming within the way of justice. Though an honest enough legal process is about up to escape fake cases. as an example, Section 19(1) requires previous sanction of the employing authority for a case under this Act. But clause (3) of an equivalent provision states that any order gone by a special judge might not be reversed or put aside thanks to any error or omission of such sanction. The anti- corruption law is formed more stringent by the insertion of section 24. This section states that any statement given by the bribe giver shouldn’t subject him to any prosecution. The existence of this section ensures the bribe giver that any statement made by him regarding giving bribe to any employee isn’t getting to lead him in any legal trouble. This provision is therefore inserted to ascertain thereto that absence of such statements by bribe givers which are conclusive evidences doesn’t cause acquittal in such cases.

But still the conviction rate in corruption cases is extremely less. Therefore, in my view the Swedish concept of Ombudsman be incorporated in Indian system. an equivalent was recommended by M.C. Setalvad, Former Attorney General of India way back in 1962. So, an Administrative Reforms Commission under the Chairmanship of Morarji Desai was found out to research and recommend enshrining the concept of Ombudsman in India. The commission placed definite suggestion before the govt. in its interim report in October. 1966. The commission recommended to categories of Ombudsman for India: a Lokpal to research actions of ministers and secretaries and one or more Lokayuktas to research the actions of officials below the rank of secretaries. the advice of the commission was accepted by the govt. and a Bill providing for Ombudsman was introduced in Lok Sabha in May 1968. The Bill was referred to as “The Lokpal and Lokyuktas, 1968”. quite four decades have passed but still the Indian Parliament has not passed a Central Legislation regarding this. This shows lack of political will to eradicate corruption from its roots from Indian system. But some Indian states namely Orissa, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh are some amongst many to pass the Lokpal bill as a state legislation. But thanks to absence of a Central Legislation the State Legislations couldn’t make this law more stringent. For an equivalent reason a Lokpal isn’t vested with many powers and hence unable to act effectively.

Corruption laws in India
Public servants in India are often penalized for corruption under the Indian legal code , 1860 and
the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988. The Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act, 1988
prohibits benami transactions. The Prevention of cash Laundering Act, 2002 penalises public
servants for the offence of cash laundering. India is additionally a signatory (not ratified) to the UN
Convention against Corruption since 2005. The Convention covers a good range of acts of
corruption and also proposes certain preventive policies.
Key Features of the Acts associated with corruption
Indian legal code , 1860:
• The IPC defines “public servant” as a government employee, officers within the military,
navy or air force; police, judges, officers of Court of Justice, and any agency
established by a central or state Act.
• Section 169 pertains to a employee unlawfully buying or bidding for property. The
public servant shall be punished with imprisonment of upto two years or with fine or
both. If the property is purchased, it shall be confiscated.
• Section 409 pertains to criminal breach of trust by an employee. the general public servant
shall be punished with captivity or with imprisonment of upto 10 years and a
fine.
The Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988
• additionally to the categories included within the IPC, the definition of “public servant”
includes office bearers of cooperative societies receiving aid from the government, employees of universities, Public Service Commission and banks.
• If a employee takes gratification aside from his legal remuneration in respect of an
official act or to influence public servants is susceptible to minimum punishment of six months and maximum punishment of 5 years and fine. The Act also penalizes a employee
for taking gratification to influence the general public by illegal means and for exercising his
personal influence with a employee .
• If a employee accepts a valuable thing without paying for it or paying inadequately
from an individual with whom he’s involved during a business transaction in his official capacity, he shall be penalized with minimum punishment of six months and maximum
punishment of 5 years and fine.
• it’s necessary to get prior sanction from the central or government so as to
prosecute a employee .
The Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Act, 1988
• The Act prohibits any benami transaction (purchase of property in alias of another
person who doesn’t buy the property) except when an individual purchases property in his
wife’s or unmarried daughter’s name.
• a person who enters into a benami transaction shall be punishable with imprisonment
of up to three years and/or a fine.
• All properties that are held to be benami are often acquired by a prescribed authority and no
money shall be purchased such acquisition.
The Prevention of cash Laundering Act, 2002
• The Act states that an offence of cash laundering has been committed if an individual may be a party to any process connected with the proceeds of crime and projects such proceeds as
untainted property. “Proceeds of crime” means any property obtained by an individual as a
result of criminal activity associated with certain offences listed within the schedule to the Act. person is often charged with the offence of cash laundering as long as he has been charged with committing a scheduled offence.
• The penalty for committing the offence of cash laundering is rigorous imprisonment
for three to seven years and a fine of upto Rs 5 lakh. If an individual is convicted of an
offence under the Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985 the term of
imprisonment can extend upto 10 years.
• The Adjudicating Authority, appointed by the central government, shall decide whether
any of the property attached or seized is involved in concealment . An Appellate
Tribunal shall hear appeals against the orders of the Adjudicating Authority and the other
authority under the Act.
• Every depository financial institution , financial organization and intermediary shall maintain a record of all transactions of a specified nature and value, and verify and maintain records of all its
customers, and furnish such information to the required authorities.
Process followed to research and prosecute corrupt public servants
• The three main authorities involved in inquiring, investigating and prosecuting corruption
cases are the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), the Central Bureau of Investigation
(CBI) and therefore the state Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB). Cases associated with concealment by public servants are investigated and prosecuted by the Directorate of Enforcement and the Financial Intelligence Unit, which are under the Ministry of Finance.
• The CBI and state ACBs investigate cases associated with corruption under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 and therefore the Indian legal code, 1860. The CBI’s jurisdiction is that the central government and Union Territories while the state ACBs investigates cases within the states. States can refer cases to the CBI.
• The CVC may be a statutory body that supervises corruption cases in government departments. The CBI is under its supervision. The CVC can refer cases either to the Central
Vigilance Officer (CVO) in each department or to the CBI. The CVC or the CVO
recommends the action to be taken against a employee but the choice to require any
disciplinary action against a official rests on the department authority.

Conclusion:
Corruption may be a big reason to stress for the Indian government. The Act is technically drafted during a beautiful way, but it’s not effectively come to the help of the govt to curb corruption. therefore, the punishment prescribed within the Act shall be much stricter to discourage the intending violators.

 

Thousands march against corruption in Delhi

corruptionHolding aloft banners and shouting slogans against rising levels of corruption in the country, thousands of people from all age groups stepped out of their homes Sunday to demand an effective anti-graft law.

Streaming banners that read ‘Corruption: Enough is enough’ and ‘Common people are raped in government offices’, the protestors gathered at the Ramlila Ground, from where they walked to Jantar Mantar, the 18th century masonry observatory that has become the rallying point on the edge of the Connaught Place shopping district in central Delhi.

Former Indian Police Service officer Kiran Bedi, social activists Swami Agnivesh and Anna Hazare and lawyer Prashant Bhushan were among the key participants in the rally, which coincided with Martyrs’ Day, the death anniversary of the Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi.

The march was part of the ‘India against Corruption’ movement being built up by some social organisations demanding passage of the Lokpal Bill in the budget session of parliament with necessary amendments.

Some eminent persons have come together and drafted an anti-corruption legislation which seeks to create an independent, empowered, transparent and accountable anti-corruption agency called Lokpal.

“The Lokpal bill prepared by the public is so effective that it will eradicate corruption in next two-three years. Political parties should support the passage of this bill as the Lokpal suggested by the government is only a showpiece,” eminent lawyer Shanti Bhushan said while addressing the rally here.

According to activists, the government is making Lokpal an advisory body, which will only recommend to the government to prosecute its corrupt ministers.

Settle corruption cases speedily, Himachal courts told

Himachal Pradesh High Court’s Chief Justice Kurian Joseph has directed all the session judges in the state to dispose of corruption cases on a priority basis, an official statement said Tuesday.

In a missive to the session judges, Justice Joseph has directed them to dispose of corruption cases prior to 2008 by June 30, 2011.

He also directed the sessions judges and the additional sessions judges to submit a monthly progress report regarding the disposal of corruption cases to the high court.

“The trial and disposal of corruption cases would be monitored by the chief justice,” said the statement.

At present, there are 279 corruption cases pending in various session courts, whereas the high court has 120 cases.