Saturday, January 7, 2012

Ex Servicemen News: Rajasthan and Hyderabad

Raj floats ex-servicemen Corporation; expands state planning body
Jaipur | Wednesday, Jan 4 2012 IST

The Rajasthan Government will soon float State Ex-Servicemen Corporation (REXCO) Limited for the welfare and help of retired servicemen. The proposal for formation of the corporation was approved by the state cabinet at its meeting held here today under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot. The proposed corporation would be a Public Enterprise with the absolute ownership of the state government and it would work to help more than two lakh ex-servicemen of the state in providing employment on contract basis to them and/or their dependents and in their other post retirement life related matters. The cabinet also gave its nod to the proposal of expanding the eight-member state planning board for accommodating two more members. Now the board would have 10 members, an official spokesman said. UNI SS SY 2316
Raj floats ex-servicemen Corporation

Retired police personnels, ex servicemen to be recruited as SPO's in Hyderabad City Police
Hyderabad January 05/2012 (Hyderabad Deccan News)

The Hyderabad city police will recruit ex-servicemen, retired police personnel and ex-central para military force personnel as special police officers (SPO's) on temporary basis. The SPOs will be deployed till reqular recruitment of police personnel takes place.
Ex-servicemen upto (50) years of age with a pass in 7th class or any army equivalent qualification and physically fit can apply. Retired police personnel and CPMF personnel who have not retired earlier that 31-03-2010 and below 60 years of age and physically fit can apply. Applicant can attend the selections at the CAR. Headquarters, Petla Burj Hyderabad on 10-01-2012 by 10.00 hrs. Ex-servicemen who are interested to apply are requested to bring their original discharge book, Ex-servicemen Identity card, Education certificate and three passport size colour photographs. Retired police personnel and Ex-CPMF personnel are requested to bring their retired DO copy, service certificate and pension papers alongwith three passport size colour photographs. For further enquiry please contact 9490616300. CAR Headqarters Petla Burj, Hyderabad and Zila Sainik Welfare officers and Employment is only on contract basis and Rs.7500/- honorarium will be paid.
Retired police personnels, ex servicemen to be recruited as SPO's in Hyderabad City Police

Ex Servicemen burgled of his life savings

Gang decamps with 40 sovereigns of gold from ex-serviceman's house
Jan 2, 2012, 12.50AM IST TNN

COIMBATORE: Unidentified gang gained entry into an ex-serviceman's house at Theethiapalayam near Perur on and decamped with 40 sovereigns of gold jewels and 6 kg of silver articles. Forensic experts have lifted fingerprints from the crime scene and a special team has been formed to nab the culprits.
According to the police, Sivakumar (40), an ex-serviceman, is working as an office assistant at the ex-servicemens' welfare association office in the city. He went with his family to Vellore to offer prayers in a temple on December 28.
Meanwhile, an unidentified gang entered into Sivakumar's house by breaking open the front door. They had fled from the house after stealing 40 sovereigns of gold jewels and 6 kg's of silver from an almirah in the house. When Sivakumar and his family came back from Vellore on Saturday evening, they found front door of the house broken and the house burgled.
Immediately, Sivakumar alerted the Perur police and a team rushed to the spot with sniffer dog, but was unable to get any clue. Later, forensic experts lifted inger prints from the house.
A special team has been formed to nab the culprits. Police have decided to intensify the night patrol in the area.
Gang decamps with 40 sovereigns of gold from ex-serviceman's house

Comment: Tamilnadu has become a haven for dacoits from Bihar, UP, Andhra, Orissa and MP to freely operate- burgle and escape. It has been revealed they fly in- get information from locals on Mobile phone- burgle or snatch gold ornaments and make a clean and speedy exit leaving the police clueless!
The local informers mostly on two wheelers track customers addresses when they withdraw cash from ATMs, banks and and purchase Gold ornaments and pass them on to professional burglars from other states. Ex Servicemen need to be more extra security concious and be as vigilant as in service.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Noida Sector 29 AWHO colony: Civilians become majority

Sec 29 club slams door on civilians
The writer has posted comments on this article TNN | Dec 27, 2011, 06.48AM IST

NOIDA: Civilians living in the defense sectors of the city are a miffed lot. Being denied membership at a neighbourhood club, a large number of residents of sectors 28, 29 and 37 are up in arms against the club management, accusing it of high-handedness and discrimination. However, office-bearers of the club claim they are not bound by any rules mandating them to allot membership to residents .

Located in Sector 29, Arun Vihar Institute (AVI) boasts of 3,000 permanent and 1,000 associate members. The Army Welfare Housing Organization (AWHO) has developed residential units for its defense personnel in the same sector. With more than 10,000 residents occupying the sectors, office-bearers of AVI say they "cannot accommodate any fresh members". However, civilians claim all serving and retired defense officers with flats in these sectors are eligible for an AVI membership.

"These sectors were developed by AWHO and meant for the Army officers, but over the years flats have changed hands and today a majority of the owners are civilians. Even the children of most Army officers are civilians, but the control of AVI still rests with ex-defense officers," said a resident of sector 28. " Though currently serving and retired officers automatically become members of the club, civilians are being denied membership," said Sanjeev Malhotra, a resident of sector 28. "We are ready to go through the selection procedure if required but we must be considered," Malhotra said.

"We should be allowed to become members on the lines of cantonment areas in other parts of the country. This is absolute high-handedness on the part of the management," said Umesh Jain, a resident.

Office-bearers say that space crunch is limiting the number of members. "Our guidelines do not mandate us to provide membership to residents of these sectors. It's the management's prerogative," said NB Singh, president, AVI.
Sec 29 club slams door on civilians
Comment: AWHO housing units have become big game money spinners and with the real estate business booming and thriving in black money and money laundering- many senior officers are becoming agents and victims of it. The main attraction of Army clubs is the cheap liqour. The civilian members should be charged the market rate with local taxes and excise duty as admissible (5 star rates). The taxes so occrued be remitted to government treasury. This will to a large extent dissuade civilians urge to become members of the AVI club.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Armed Forces Covenant Bill

The Sunday Standard> A Bill that arms the supreme sacrifice by Ritu Sharma Last Updated : 18 Dec 2011 09:37:37 AM IST
NEW DELHI: A soldier’s sacrifice may no longer be in vain. A Bill on military covenant— the nation’s promise that soldiers and their families will be cared for in return of their sacrifices— will soon be introduced in Parliament.
The Indian armed forces are among one of the largest volunteer forces in the world. With their life so fraught with risk, the Armed Forces Covenant Bill plans to honour the “unique service” given by the members of the armed forces and their families.
The British Armed forces got its Military Covenant law this year. The Indian Armed Forces Covenant Bill is awaiting Parliament to resume normal functioning to be introduced.
“The country needs to demonstrate its commitment to the well-being of the members of our armed forces and their families. This Bill underlines the country’s commitment and moral obligation towards them,” Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar, who will pilot the Bill, told The Sunday Standard.
The proposed Bill envisages “pledging of commitment” that soldiers— both retired and serving —and their families will be provided with medical support, education; good quality and affordable accommodation; a comprehensive compensation system; maintenance for disabled soldiers and bereaved families; reservation in civilian jobs particularly related to security and more. It also entails the government set up the Armed Forces Grievances Redressal Commission, comprising senior judges and top army brass to oversee that the provisions of the law are fulfilled.
“The Bill will also require the Minister of Defence to present an Annual Covenant report to Parliament every year on the progress of improvements in key areas including healthcare, housing and education,” Chandrasekhar added.
The serving officers see the idea of making military covenant a law as a distant dream but hope that the legal pledge on the part of the country will go a long way in buoying the spirits of the soldier.
“In the present scenario where corporate culture is taking toll on the recruitment in the armed forces, the legalisation of military covenant will boost the trust of army men that his family and loved ones will be taken care of if he is gone. This would enable him to discharge his duties with ultimate fearlessness,” a serving officer said.
A Bill that arms the supreme sacrifice

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

One Rank One Pension gets buried with Lokpal Bill

hr singh - canada
Indian defence pensioners owe a gratitude to the Petition Committee of Rajya Sabha headed by Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar MP for recommending the government to implement One Rank One Pension(OROP) in defence forces. It is an historic decision for which the defence pensioners had been demanding that all defence pensioners should get similar pension for putting in equal numbers of years of service and retiring at the same rank irrespective of the date of retirement. A glaring example of disparity and discrimination during the implementation of fourth CPC recommendation when the rates of pension of a Captain like me with 16 years of service were less than a L/Corporal with equal years of service retiring under the same pay commission. My pension with 16 years of service was fixed as Rs. 437/pm whereas pension of the following ranks with 16 years of service and retiring under the same pay commission was fixed as follows: MWO-1031, WO-941, JWO-809, SGT-592, Corporal-521, LAN CORP-455. One can imagine the height of discrimination. Hope the government will soon end the disparity

Implement one rank, one pension: Par panel to govt
Last Updated: Monday, December 26, 2011,
In its report, the Rajya Sabha Petitions Committee said the financial liability of Rs 1,300 crores is not very big amount to deny the parity in pension, the release said. The Committee rejected Finance Ministry's apprehension of that acceptance of the demand for equal pension to personnel of equal rank and equal length of service will trigger similar request from other government employees. The Committee pointed out that "terms and conditions of defence personnel and civil servants are vastly different and said the demand of armed forces personnel demand for OROP was unresolved due to bureaucratic apathy".
The Rajya Sabha Committee on Petitions is headed by Bhagat Singh Koshyari (BJP)
click here to read more

Indians subjected to Chinese Lokpal

Angered by diplomat's court treatment, India summons Chinese envoy
India has lodged its protest with China against the ill-treatment meted out to its diplomat from the Shanghai Consulate.

The diplomat, S. Balachandran, was not allowed to leave a court room in a nearby city for medication following which he collapsed and was rushed to a hospital on December 31.

India summoned Zhang Yue, Chinese Deputy Chief of Mission, on Monday to point out that “this is no way to treat a diplomat.” A diabetes patient, Mr. Balachandran's sugar level plummeted after he remained confined to the court room without food or drink for five hours. He had gone to Yiwu city, 300 km from Shanghai, to provide consular assistance to two Indians who were arrested after their employer absconded without paying a huge amount due to a local businessmen.

Sources, however, denied earlier Indian reports that the diplomat had suffered injuries after a crowd of irate traders mobbed him as he was accompanying the two Indians out of the court room in Yiwu, an ancient city and now a centre for commodity traders. India's Consul-General in Shanghai Rita Das has also spoken with officials of Zhejiang province, where Yiwu is situated.
Angered by diplomat's court treatment, India summons Chinese envoy

Comment: MEA has more sick diplomats under its umbrella than physically fit ones. A Diplomat fainting in a Chinese Court speaks volumes of the Indian representation abroad. Can we fight the Chinese Lokpal?

Monday, January 2, 2012

AHQ documentation and profiling of Officers puts COAS in the dock

Govt's next battle: Against army chief
Ajai Shukla / New Delhi January 1, 2012, 0:13 IST

The UPA government, still smarting from the Lok Pal Bill fiasco in the Rajya Sabha, already contemplates its next battle. Business Standard has learnt that the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), General V K Singh, plans to petition the Supreme Court on Monday after the Ministry of Defence (MoD) yesterday rejected his statutory complaint asking for his date of birth to be reconciled.

The army chief contends (supported by 19 documents, including matriculation and birth certificates) that he was born on May 10, 1951. That makes him eligible to serve till May 31, 2013, when he would retire after completing 62 years that month. The Adjutant General’s (AG’s) Branch, the army’s official record keeper, supports that date. But the Military Secretary’s Branch, which handles promotions, has him born on May 10, 1950 and, therefore, due for retirement on May 31, 2012. The MoD has ruled that the latter date is correct.

“The chief will leave on January 5 for an official visit to Myanmar. Before that, he would like to file his writ petition, to which he is entitled as a citizen of India,” says a close aide to Singh.

Sources close to Singh describe him as “extremely bitter” at the government’s “backstabbing” over this issue. They say Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee was mediating with the army chief on behalf of the government. After Singh refused the offer of a post-retirement ambassadorship or governorship, retorting that this was a matter of honour, Mukherjee is said to have asked the chief to wait till January 16, 2012, when a face-saving compromise would be worked out. To the army chief’s surprise yesterday, the government rejected his petition.

Approached for comments, Mukherjee’s office admitted the finance minister met Singh yesterday, in a closed-door one-on-one meeting. But the official denied that the date-of-birth issue was discussed. “So many people discuss different things with the finance minister. We cannot reveal what they talked,” the official said.
Govt's next battle: Against army chief

COAS to resign ahead of tenure?
General Singh is consulting legal experts, including three former Chief Justices of India, and they have strongly supported him. Sources say the Army chief has two options: Either to go to the Armed Forces Tribunal, or move to Supreme Court directly. The Supreme Court is already hearing a Public Interest Litigation over the issue.

Sources also say that General Singh has also not ruled out resigning ahead of his tenure ending on May 31, 2012 - the date which the government has now decided.
Read more at: click here

Tailpiece
... a ministry headed by “honest” Antony, we have an unexplained sum of Rs 600 crore being paid as “business charges” by the UPA government to an Israeli arms manufacturer. Till date, the government has not explained what this money is about.
Antony vs Army Chief: When honesty is not good enough by R Jagannathan Jan 3, 2012- click here for the full story

Malpractices in the supply chain management of the Army

Army ration supply practices rotten: Public Accounts Committee
The Hindu: Special Correspondent
In certain cases troops consumed dry rations 6-28 months after expiry

Pointing out that the Army marches on its stomach, the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament has taken exception to its ration supply chain practices and cited several “glaring deficiencies and inadequacies.”

Observing that in certain cases dry rations were consumed by troops even 6-28 months after the expiry of their normal Estimated Storage Life (ESL), the PAC in its report, tabled last week, recommended that the authorities revisit/amend the existing provision of the Army Service Corps technical instructions to ensure that food items were issued in accordance with their ESL.

As for fresh vegetables and fruits, 74 per cent of these items issued to the units by the supply depots were not in accordance with the prescribed norms.

Citing “serious anomalies in receipt and supply of vegetables in one station alone,” the PAC said the Northern Command rations worth Rs. 1.92 crore remained untraceable as on March, 31, 2008. A test check reflected “deep-rooted and widespread malpractices in the supply chain management of the Army.”

Observing “shortcomings” in the procurement procedures of the Army Service Corps, it noted highly non-competitive procurement of fresh rations and deviation from the laid down guidelines.

Deploring the mismatch between the issue and receipt of rations, the PAC said it was inconceivable that such things could happen “without the complicity of officers” concerned.

In another report on the Canteen Stores Department (CSD), the PAC took a serious view of the Army Headquarters denying auditors access to the accounts of the Unit Run Canteens (URCs), which recorded an annual turnover of Rs.8,500 crore during 2008-09.

Noting that the Comptroller and Auditor-General was unable to audit the 3,600 URCs, the report said this restricted parliamentary oversight to the CSD.

The CAG has been seeking to audit the URCs' accounts on the ground that the CSD transfers money from the Consolidated Fund of India in the form of qualitative discounts. But the armed forces are opposed to the move, claiming that the URCs are run with a non-public fund.

“The Committee is dismayed to note that Audit was denied access to records of the URCs by the Army Headquarters in spite of repeated requests…What is more intriguing is the fact that such denial was made despite the directions of the Defence Ministry to make records of the URCs available for audit.”
Army ration supply practices rotten: Public Accounts Committee

AWHO sets standards of low transparency

Allotment of Army Flats in Panchkula
Consumer panel sees Adarsh-like scam
Vijay Mohan/TNS Monday, January 2, 2012, Chandigarh, India
Chandigarh, January 1

Holding that the allotment of some dwelling units made by the Army Welfare Housing Organisation (AWHO) in its project at Sector 20, Panchkula, was in violation of rules, the State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission has observed that the exercise was done “presumably with a view to accommodate favourites and everything does not appear to have been done in a transparent manner.”

Ruling that the system adopted to fix the seniority of applicants was arbitrary, the Commission held that if enquired into deeply “this may again turn out to be another scam like Adarsh Society at Mumbai.”

AWHO, the Commission observed, is an organisation created for the welfare of serving and retired defence personnel and expected to act in a transparent manner.

A resident of Sector 2, Panchkula, RK Dhingra had earlier moved the District Consumer Forum against the non-allotment of a flat in AWHO’s colony or failing which, in another similar project in Panchkula or Mohali. The forum had granted him relief following which the AWHO authorities appealed against the order before the commission, which dismissed the appeal.Dhingra’s prime grievance was that some senior officers who were much junior registrants in the scheme by virtue of their date of registration, were later placed higher in the waiting list. Dhingra, with registration number 98,248 was placed at serial number 15 in the waiting list, where as a Brigadier with registration number 1,04,727 was placed on top of the list.

The seniority in the list was to be determined on the basis of the date on the bank draft and allotment thereafter on the basis of a draw of lots.

The complainant, however, had been told by the AWHO authorities that he was the senior-most applicant on the waiting list. When he came to know that some allotments were made “illegally”, he approached the authorities and was told that his present position in the list was No. 1. He could either seek transfer or withdraw his registration as all dwelling units stood allotted and had been handed over.

On pointing out discrepancies, he was told that all but one unit had been handed over and formalities and paperwork were in process for the lone remaining unit.
AWHO: Consumer panel sees Adarsh-like scam

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Will PM's assurance curb corruption?

Govt committed to a strong Lokpal: PM's New Year message
Press Trust of India, Updated: December 31, 2011 23:09 IST
New Delhi: Wishing to put behind a "very difficult" year, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Saturday acknowledged that concern about corruption has moved to the centre stage and vowed to personally work to provide an "honest and more efficient government".

In his New Year message to the nation, he noted that corruption was a serious problem that needs multi-dimensional response of which Lokpal and Lokayuktas are an important part. (PM's New Year message: Full transcript)

He said it was "unfortunate" that Lokpal and Lokayuktas Bill could not be passed by the Rajya Sabha but said the government was committed to enactment of the effective law.

"The year that has just ended was a very difficult year for the world," Dr Singh said, citing the economic crisis, socio economic tensions, "political upheavals in many developing countries" and "a revolution of rising expectations fostered by the extraordinary reach of the electronic media and the connectivity provided by new social networking platforms."

These issues kept governments around the world "on their toes", he said, adding that "we in India have had our share of problems."

Talking in the context of India specifically, Dr Singh said the economy slowed down, inflation edged up and "concern about corruption moved to the centre stage".

Counselling against despondency, he said, "we must address the new concerns that have arisen while remaining steadfast in our commitment to put the nation on a development path which ensures rapid, inclusive and sustainable growth.

"I want to assure you all on this New Year's day that I personally will work to provide an honest and more efficient government, a more productive, competitive and robust economy and a more equitable and just social and political order."

Comments AjAy Bhatia 13 hours ago
On the eve of the new year PM has given hope to the nation for the srong lokpal. It seems that MPs are not interested and it will be a great challenge for the PM. There is a great need for cleaning the whole system. Right people should be given seat at right place for the efficient and effective governance.
Govt committed to a strong Lokpal: PM's New Year message

Imaging Indian corruption DNA

Author: Udayan Namboodiri
Indians Like Us (PLU) have chicanery in our DNA. Ending corruption would shatter our delightful economy, scatter our “contacts” and stunt future plans based on cosy “settings”. Anna gave us a temporary guilt trip, but thanks to Parliament's “supremacy” all is well

When Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari barked out the order “national song!” at the stroke of midnight on Thursday, utter quietude swept the playing bowl of the Rajya Sabha. All the MPs who were just short of spitting on each other till then sprang to their feet like naughty schoolboys surprised by the sudden arrival of the prefect.

Then they trooped out shouting slogans, a job well done. And we, in the grateful sub-nation of Indians Like Us (aka PLU— People Like Us) went to sleep, happy that our humungously selfish world was left intact. And oh, we forgot to notice the supreme irony that Vande Mataram, Bamkim Chandra’s powerful call to Mother India, had anything to do with that cathedral. But then, how many of the distinguished gentlemen present in the House — forget the general mass (aka People Like Them) — had any idea what Vande Mataram was about?

We PLU folks have over the generations struck a strange comfort level with corruption. Lip service for Anna Hazare is one thing, but we secretly dread transportation to an Auschwitz where we would be forced to live like ordinary people respecting suffocating laws and equalising rules, and, generally, paying the price for our chicanery. India may be one of the poorest nations in the world with 80 per cent living sub-Saharan lifestyles, but for us 200 million its better than Sweden — without the discipline and transparency.

So, thanks to the (excuse my Calcuttaism) “Got up match” arranged by Pranab Mukherjee and Mamata Banerjee, a Lokpal, independent CBI and all, is door ast. We can have our rosogollah and eat it too.

The Lokpal, if passed into law, would have created unimaginable crises at social, economic and political levels. Hundreds of millions of Indians working hard and enjoying only the fruits of transparent pursuits may be a moralist’s utopia, but it may also turn out an economist’s nightmare.

For starters, where would an economy emerge from to sustain so much honesty? Every sector —from Agriculture to Zinc mining — is dominated by individuals and corporate entities who have tweaked rules with gay abandon for years. Many of these would be driven out of business when the neta-babu-bania axis is broken up by a good Lokpal, independent CBI and all. The victims of this purification would in the most part be the workers and low-grade executives — I’ll bet their owners have already made getaway plans.

So, a new population of the starving would be added to the already existing one. A good Lokpal, independent CBI and all, would spell disaster for NGOs for whom serving the deprived is a convenient fa├žade. Reason: fewer sinners seeking soul cleansing through donations. No more Mother Teresas and Puttaparthi Sai Babas because it would become harder and harder for drug lords and tax avoiders to underwrite God’s own work.

Suppose the Lokpal is not strategically peopled by malleable officials beforehand, and it has an independent CBI and all, it could, in the long run, foster a culture of honesty in the country. Schoolteachers would be forced teach their charges properly instead of running after private tuition; doctors would become accountable; journalists would stop toadying to operators; the streets of Delhi would be cleaner, and, yes, the trains would run on time.

Let’s not jump with joy at the prospect. Living the disciplined life is harder than you think. Indians, who travel abroad, even as far as Singapore, invariably return with a sense of wonder about the little things which each citizen of those countries does to simplify life in general. But in India, “freedom” is a much-stretched concept. Our democratic patricians have, for their own sustenance, promoted a national culture of waste and abuse which, over three generations, has benumbed the ordinary Indian’s responses to myriad transgressions.

For instance, my right to “democratic protest” is burning a public bus. Or preventing you from rushing your sickchild to a doctor. This phoney democratic edifice is in itself a manifestation of corruption and would have to go. Democracy would need to be taken back to the worktable and reshaped to benefit the common man, not mindlessly serve the entrenched elite’s sense of entitlement. Now, wouldn’t that be injurious for the economic health of PLUs? Think, for instance of the years of building the right contacts which would henceforth amount to nothing?

And, how would we get by in a new world where everything may be transparent? We hate transparency, consider it anti-people. What about a whole national economy based on graft? Take, for example, an everyday example. Few people care to know that that the giant advertising hoardings in our cities break environment and building laws. They may bring in a few pennies to our civic bodies, but the benefits which accrue to the large advertisers at the cost of the common good are many times higher. When confronted, their last defence is “think of the hundreds employed in this.”

That’s a tricky poser because we don’t have a genre of economists capable of computing the short to medium term cost of ending corruption. Economics, like most disciplines taught in Indian universities, is for serving the master’s cause. The exacerbating dimension has been the post-1991 trend to serve masters in Washington, not even India.

So, one of the first steps that a strong Lokpal institution, independent CBI and all, should undertake is commission, through reputed institutions like NSSO and NCAER, proper research into the length, breadth and depth of corruption already existing in the system. Without putting a cost to that it would be impossible to evolve a salvage plan.

Unemployment and a receding future being the inescapable pains accompanying the transition from deep corruption to first signs of change, masses of Indians would be left with no option but emigrate. Today’s Washington Post has a story about falling birth rates in South America. Last week’s Daily Mirror had another about certain west European countries facing demographic disaster for lack of breeding age people. That’s opportunity for Indians. Now, Indians are synonymous with virtuous citizenship in their adopted countries. You’d rarely hear of an Indian breaking even a traffic rule in any of the countries peopled by our 60 mn Diaspora. The only time Indians make the crime news abroad is when they get killed in hate crimes.

What about those, undeniably the vast majority, who won’t be accepted anywhere and are doomed to live and die like aam admi? Nation rebuilding is hardly possible with unskilled, uncompetitive people. But a good Lokpal, independent CBI and all, would certainly take the bottom out of the corrupt politico-bureaucratic system which is the cause of all their misfortune. One of the best effects would be a replacement of the political masters — the good would drive away the bad.

A good Lokpal, independent CBI and all, would surely plug the existing leaks in public money flows. Hundreds of thousands of crore would be saved if the graft economy is strangled to death —or even emaciated by half. Government tender evaluation processes, if recorded on CCTV, would lead to lakhs of crore flowing to public purposes. At everyday levels, if only our IAS babus could be reminded of rules governing use of government cars, that in itself would spare more a minimum Rs 1 lakh crore annually. The dhobi list of could-dos is endless.

But before all this begins —and thanks to Dada and Didi it won’t for quite some time — we must place our hands to our hearts and ask ourselves “do we as a nation really want to be less corrupt?” In all probability, we’d end up seeing our hearts pop out of our mouths.
(The writer is Senior Editor, The Pioneer)
Imagining India without corruption

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