Essay on the Prevention of Corruption – Corruption which has gone deep into our social life cannot be removed very easily. In fact, it can only be reduced or minimised, and can hardly be stopped altogether. No nation has become successful so far in this regard.
Even for minimising this problem, both preventive and punitive measures will have to be taken. The Santharam Committee on the Prevention of Corruption, instituted by the Central Government in 1964, observes, “Corruption cannot be eliminated or even satisfactorily reduced unless preventive measures are planned and implemented in a sustained and effective manner.
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Preventive action must include administrative, legal, social, economic and educative measures”, [as quoted by C.B. Mamoria]
The Committee recommended the following measures:
1. A thorough study of the extent possible, scope and modes of corruption should be undertaken regarding each department, undertaking or ministry. The study must also suggest preventive remedial measures for the same.
2. Administrative delays should be reduced to the minimum to avoid corrupt practices. For this purpose:
(a) existing procedures and practices should be reviewed to avoid delays;
(b) time-limits should be prescribed for dealing with receipts and should be strictly enforced; and
(c) all nothings at a lower level than that of undersecretary should be avoided.
3. Attempts should be made to educate citizens in regard to their rights, responsibilities and the procedures of the government.
4. Improvement must be made to increase the salary of the employers besides making necessary provisions for housing, medical facilities for the government employees, etc.
5. Informal codes of conduct for different categories of employees particularly belonging to the departments dealing with economic affairs must be evolved insisting on them not to avail themselves of entertainment and other facilities provided to them by those with whom they have official dealings.
6. Officials should not have any dealings with a person claiming to act on behalf of an industrial house unless he is properly authorised to do so.
7. Companies and businessmen should be obliged to keep detailed accounts of expenditure.
8. Officers for the administrative posts should be selected with great care. Only those whose integrity is tested to the fullest satisfaction must be appointed for the key posts.
9. There should be a complete ban against government servants accepting private commercial or industrial employment for two years after retirement.
Some Other Suggestions:
In addition to the above recommendations made by The Santharam Committee, the following suggestions may be considered with a view to eradicate or minimise corruption:
(a) The taxation laws must be modified, licenses and permit system must be thoroughly reviewed.
(b) The law enforcing authorities must see that the laws are rigorously enforced without any fear or favour.
(c) Mass communication media must play a more positive role in encouraging honesty and discouraging and condemning dishonesty and corruption.
(d) The salaries of government officials and the ministers and legislators must be raised in tune with the price index.
(e) Bureaucratic corruption must be reduced by stringent enforcement of punitive measures against bribe-taking.
(f) Corruption trials should be given the widest possible publicity.
Prevention of Corruption Act, 1947:
Certain sections of the IPC could be used for punishing those who are guilty of taking bribe. The Central Government introduced in 1947 “The Prevention of Corruption Act” for the more effective prevention of bribery and corruption. The Act, of course, has been a miserable failure in reaching its target. We know that corruption has increased out of all proportions.
B. Black Money:
‘Black Money’ which is often referred to as “parallel economy” or “unrecognised economy” or “unofficial economy” is both an economic and a social problem. It has both social and economic consequences upon society.
Black money is a problem with a difference. If the problem of poverty affects those who are poor, and if the problem of unemployment affects directly those who are unemployed, the problem of black money does not much affect those who have ample of black money, but it affects the common man and the society at large. Hence all the nations are concerned about checking or controlling the growth of black money.
Meaning of Black Money:
Black money is that, which is earned or received in contravention of the prevailing Government acts and regulations, or money that has been retained without the payment of taxes which are due to the Government.
Black money accrues everyday and everywhere and ranges from a few rupees to a few lakhs of rupees.
(i) It is black money when a minister or a parliament member or an official takes payment for giving a licence or a permit,
(ii) It is black money when a cement or steel manufacturer or trader, sells the commodity at a price above the controlled rate without the money appearing in the official records,
(iii) When a professor goes to another university to conduct an examination and travels in II class train while claiming I class fare, he also acquires money which is not white, but black. These examples could be multiplied.
The Origin of the Term ‘Black Money’:
“It was during the Second World War that the terms ‘black market’ and ‘black money’ came into vogue. Due to imposition of various controls on distribution and prices a clandestine market had sprung up in which things were still available, but at prices higher than the controlled ones.
The term “black money” became current to describe the money received or paid in such ‘black market’ deals with the passage of time, ‘black money’ acquired a wider connotation — wider than its association with black market transactions alone.” [Mamoria],
“Today the term ‘black money’ is generally used to denote unaccounted money or concealed income and/or undisclosed with, as well as money involved in transactions wholly or partly suppressed.”— [Mamoria]
In simple words, it can be said that black money is tax-evaded money. This kind of money can be earned through either legal or illegal means.
(i) Its legitimate source is that when those who earn income through various ways do not reveal their entire income for tax purposes.
(i) Teachers earning money through private tuition and book royalty not included it in their income tax returns,
(ii) Music artists earning huge amount of money by giving programmes on contract basis and including only a part of it in their income tax returns and retaining with themselves a major portion of their earnings and so on.
(ii) Its illegitimate sources are many.
Bribes, black marketing, smuggling, selling commodities at prices higher than the controlled prices, and so on.