India – Anti-Corruption Action and Evasion

September 8, 2011

By Padmini Arhant

Subsequent to Jan Lokpal  (anti-corruption) bill adoption in the Parliament on August 28, 2011, the actions against corruption has escalated but only limiting to those individuals considered expendable or sacrificial worthy.

Otherwise the top guns actually behind the monumental corruption scandals from 2G Spectrum to cash for votes scam are conveniently spared for political and economic reasons allowing politics to undermine judicial process in a democracy.

However, the Supreme Court decisions on the latest charges against head of the State in Tamil Nadu on disproportionate assets case and the Delhi High Court move towards Members of Parliament in cash for votes maintain judiciary function and constitutional requirement to uphold judicial system fair and equal for all in a democratic society.

Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) expeditious apprehension of illegal mining barons – the Reddy brothers – Janardhana Reddy and Karunakara Reddy, the former state legislators in the opposition BJP led government under ex-Chief Minister Yeddyurappa in Karnataka was long overdue considering their alliance with the then Chief Minister Y.S.Rajasekhara Reddy of the Congress State government in Andhra Pradesh.

Again CBI under Central government control could be more effective in timely investigation and appropriate delivery without ruling power maneuver to suit political agenda.

Such anomalies prompted the civil society call to de-link CBI’s anti-corruption wing from government and brought under Jan Lokpal to improve efficacy as the national investigative authority especially involving political members with conflict of interest.

In other developments, Prime Minister Man Mohan Singh’s assets declaration is praiseworthy and clearly sets the motion for high profile as well as rank and file to follow suit within and across the aisle.

Congress Party Leaderships – Mrs. Sonia Gandhi and son Mr. Rahul Gandhi notwithstanding daughter Priyanka Vadra and key cabinet ministers assets have not been presented thus far.

Anti-corruption measures without black money and tax recovery does not fulfill the core objectives to curb fraud and eliminate absconding capability among the powerful and influential in the society.

For any political party to proclaim sacrosanct with counterproductive remarks viz. ‘salacious and spicy’ on factual findings in the cash for votes is blatant evasion of responsibility in the highest order.

In this context, it would be honorable for political parties to transcend hierarchy in set ting precedence for public scrutiny and thorough independent inquiry on all dealings and undertakings evidently depriving national income and compromising credibility including image as the emerging economic power.

Besides, the privileged class impropriety on national issues from political and economic to social and environmental matter confirms double standards with judiciary and law enforcement rendered defunct for those in power while exceeding protocol against mainstream and political targets in the haphazard effort to establish transparency and accountability.

The government’s recent escapade against team Anna members with the so-called privileged notices served on the individuals along with politically motivated allegations reaffirm the urgent need to downsize the misused political clout subverting Parliamentary role in national affairs and intimidation to suppress constitutional rights on free speech.

Members of Parliament objection to team Anna or any citizens’ demand for checks and balances in national policies or the lack thereof found detrimental to the country they are elected to serve reveals the inherent resistance to dismantle corruption built-in political structure.

The existing rule barring non-Parliamentary access to remove implicated members of Parliament during their term in office facilitates corruption culture considering the prerogative seldom utilized by other MP’s fearing political backlash and exposure to their possible share of similar involvements.

Hence fighting corruption could be meaningful when political parties begin with their domain and get the house in order prior to implementing strategies to deflect probe against the main protagonists in all major national unscrupulous unethical events undermining democracy.

For instance – in 2G Spectrum trial – Political bargain between UPA and DMK led to DMK MPs A. Raja and Kanimozhi in prison.

In order to demonstrate equal application of law in a sovereign nation, subjecting the then Finance Minister P.Chidambaram, Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal, Prime Minister Man Mohan Singh, Congress Party Leader Sonia Gandhi and,

Not excluding the ministers associated in any manner with Spectrum controversy from the oppositions regardless of contemporary view would clarify the constitutionality in determining none are above the law in a democratic society.

From the economic sector – the industrialists Mr. Anil Ambani and Mr. J.R.D.Tata as beneficiaries in the lucrative Spectrum contract resulting in phenomenal loss of revenue to national exchequer in the deliberate rejection to auction the government tangible asset favoring corporate donors against national interest,

Mr. Mukesh Ambani is also cited in direct violation of laws of land……

Commonwealth Games – Mr. Suresh Kalmadi presented as the prim facie with the drag net consisting other members from the Congress Party like the Delhi Chief Minister Shiela Dixit, Congress Leader Sonia Gandhi, Congress Party General Secretary Rahul Gandhi…granted impunity against interrogation or legal

Cash for Votes – Although the government guided CBI arrested Mr. Amar Singh, the former member of Samajwadi party in Rajya Sabha, the proceedings beyond Mr. Amar Singh presumably acting at the Congress Party luminaries’ behest based on the real benefit to UPA in Confidence Vote survival on July 22, 2008 would exemplify the judiciary power withstanding political pressure in the republic of India.

Accordingly, Prime Minister Man Mohan Singh, Congress Party Leader Sonia Gandhi, Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi (reportedly for active participation in alluring MP’s from opposition with Cash) is a serious engagement for a national political party and warrants necessary attention from the highest court on land.

Bofors Scandal – Mr. Ottavio Quattrocchi, Italian businessman and a close ally of Congress Party leader Sonia Gandhi and the late Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi accused as the broker in India’s one of the largest scandal acquitted without trial through political influence over CBI.

CBI obliging the Congress leader’s instructions withdrew Mr. Ottavio Quattrocchi’s name from the wanted list and further appealed to Interpol to withdraw the 12 year old red flag against Mr. Quattrocchi

Delhi High Court discharged Mr. Quattrocchi from the case on March 4, 2011.

Mr. Ottavio Quattrocchi extradition was repeatedly mishandled with Indian government failure to obtain court order required for Mr. Quattrocchi’s arrest and the extradition case was lost with no appeal filed and the reason attributed to the delay in obtaining official English translation of the court order.

Reopening Bofors chapter would be instrumental in restoring justice across the political and socio-economic helm profiting from national resources at taxpayers’ cost with the trend continuing until now.

Concurrently, it is poignant to revisit the Bhopal disaster verdict seeking the Union Carbide CEO Warren M. Anderson’s extradition from the United States and review the indicted executive’s plea last year.

Mr. Anderson sought leniency on health grounds in 2010 claiming that the 91 years old diagnosed with terminal cancer had barely three months to live and in exchange for court appearance offered an apology via live video to Bhopal victims of national tragedy.

Accordingly in observance with the Indian tradition and court considerations on age and health factor, pragmatic approach in accepting Mr. Anderson’s apology admitting negligence in the biggest industrial catastrophe transpired at that time.

The victims families were requested to forgive Mr. Anderson upon his recognition and remorse for the Bhopal incident causing immense suffering to the survivors.

Mr. Warren Anderson was not vindicated from the horrendous industrial mishap and a year later in the absence of televised apology or ailments; the disingenuous submission from the accused necessitates extradition revival alongside individuals complicit in the crisis mismanagement.

Sadly, the widespread moral decay prioritizing personal gains despite collective damages precipitates crimes evolving into conflicts with no end in sight.  The mistrust against governments largely emanates from abuse of power for self-interest.

Moral Science is mandatory in educational curriculum worldwide to cultivate the importance of ethical conduct in life.  The art of deception, falsehood and betrayal promoting aggression inhibits courage imperative for honesty graduating into nobility.

Morality is the barometer indicating the character strength vital for life with peace and dignity.

Unfortunately, leaderships in politics, economics and other discipline concentrate on survival in the fiercely competitive conditions harboring acrimony than harmony to retain power or ownership for exclusive prosperity.

Actions or Karma is investment with positive and negative returns depending on the deeds with a stark reminder to refrain from recurring mistakes – in particular immoral behavior in obedience to the conscience providing moral guidance since birth until death.

Life is a learning experience teaching lessons to prevent the point of no return.

In light of prevalent violence and volatility, nations could institutionalize ethics and morality combined with transparency and accountability for both public and private sector.

Strong emphasis on patriotism, community service and humanitarian tasks would spread peace deterring constant turmoil across the globe.

Inspiring young and old to be caring and compassionate towards the needy and vulnerable lives would highly improve the general habitat.

Reverting to Indian political dynamic with corruption having macro impact on the society, the leaderships’ candid disclosure ranging from own financial status to economic policies, contracts and agreements could vastly contribute to better relations between the government and people.

Judiciary accelerating the relevant hearing on numerous corruptions extending preferential treatment to none irrespective of stature would enhance democratic values promising a bright and secure future.

India has the potential to be the beacon light in the twenty first century and eradicating corruption with strict adherence to laws is paramount to initiate sound democratic principles bound by ethics in the post independent era.

Good Luck! To citizens of India in recovering national wealth.


Peace to all!


Thank you.


Padmini Arhant


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