CORRUPTION: Prohibition and Prevention

Bhubaneswar: The more the Anti-Corruption Department in Odisha raids the black money and illegal properties of government employees, the more the number of corrupt officers in different government sectors increases from time to time. Even though the government has adopted a zero-tolerance policy towards corruption since the last 2019, it seems the corrupt government employees are least bothered in this regard. In the last three years, the state government has dismissed about 187 employees from their job, whereas some are also deprived of availing of their post-retirement facilities. Similarly, many corrupt employees are put behind bars. Yet, the list of corrupt employees is going longer with time. Newspapers are filled with headlines as ‘ so n’ so corrupt officials in the clutch of vigilance’. It looks as if the judiciary has become a helpless infant of corruption.

This year in 2022, remarkably, the Vigilance has seized around illegal property worth 160 crores which are noted as the highest in history. Moreover, Vigilance has also filed a case against 60 class one government officials which are as well the highest in the last five year’s time. The Vigilance has also seized more than Rs 7 crore in cash which is as well noted as a record-breaking amount. As of this year, the Vigilance department has filed 270 cases about corruption and illegal money as yet. Out of those cases, 75 are of illegal money and 114 cases are of bribes. This year, there are 87 officials are convicted in the court, which is half of the total cases and considered the highest in a decade time. But if the situation in the last few years is analyzed, then the number of convicted in the Vigilance department is pathetic. As per data, in the last 7 years by the Vigilance department, around 3088 people have been convicted and 954 people have been acquitted. Here, it can also be claimed that the department of Vigilance is poor in their investigation, which is the reason behind most accused getting released on bail or acquainted in the court as the charge sheets are not submitted in time. There are still more than 1000 cases kept pending in the court. In the past, the case of the director general of police vigilance had faced harsh criticism in the high court. On the other hand, the people suspect whether the government excessively advertises the money/ properties seized by the Vigilance. The government should give proper clarification on this.

It is a fact that not only in Odisha but corruption has become a pervasive affair all across the country. The union government has also taken stringent actions against corruption by forcing many government officials into retirement or laying them off from their jobs. But alas, this does not put any visible impact on the other corrupt employees. Ever since the 1990s liberalization and a market economy were introduced in our country corruption has become more and more severe. the central bodies like CBI, and ED as well as other state-level bodies are there to work actively for the eradication of corruption. Despite all the stringent laws and judicial system corruption is so rampant that India ranks 85th out of 180 countries in the world. Corruption has become deep-rooted at the government level, So corruption can only be controlled by personality, character, integrity and commitment. The way corruption has been increasing in our country is certainly not good news for the future of the nation.