Corruption in India v/s Gandhian ANNA- Part 1

This post is No.1 in a 3 part series:

“Corruption and hypocrisy ought not to be inevitable products of democracy, as they undoubtedly are today”

-Mahatma Gandhi[1]

Aug 28, 2011: Who better than an Indian can state the significance of this date in his life? It was not the day of Diwali! India didn’t win any Cricket World Cup on that day! Yet the celebration was huge. After all, a 12-day long fast of Anna Hazare came to an end when parliament of India agreed to pass a resolution in favor of a stringent “Lok-Pal Bill” against corruption. Indeed, a history was written on the “paper of democracy” with the “quill of protest” inked in “non-violence” indicating that countdown to a corruption free democracy has finally begun.


 Today, when corruption has been gulping plethora of liquidity from the markets across the globe, economists are scratching their heads hard for unearthing new ways and means to combat the severe outcomes of black money. India is no exception to it. Government agencies, politicians, public companies, private companies, NGOs, trusts, judiciary and media related scams are too many in number to count and too much in monetary terms to summarize in the units available causing dent to its image of being the fastest growing biggest democracy in the world. A 74 year old person “Anna Hazare” has however lightened the torch of anti-corruption the way Gandhi did for the freedom of India in the year 1947. Their objectives might differ but the way to achieve them is one or the same i.e., “non-violence”. Its immense influence particularly on the youth has been energizing them to struggle for the good cause. It will therefore be interesting to discover how this age old remedy can cure the long lasting diseases of unfair practices noticed at every level of Indian society.

Understanding Terminologies Involved in Unfair Practices

“Corruption” can be defined as a wrongdoing on the part of an authority or powerful party through means that are illegitimate, immoral, or incompatible with ethical standards. Corruption often results from patronage and is associated with bribery.[2] It can also be defined as a type of strategic action in which two or more actors undertake an exchange relation by way of a successful transfer of money (material) or power (political or status) or promoting of gene (genetic), which sidesteps legality or morality or civility to regulate the relation. It is a strategic interaction or an art of nonviolent negotiation. As mentioned before, social action is strategic when it is aimed at the successful realization of personally defined goals. It makes distinction between “need driven” and “greed driven” necessity harder.[3]

“Nepotism” can be described as a practice of appointing relatives and friends in one’s organization to positions for which outsiders might be better qualified. Despite its negative connotations, nepotism (if applied sensibly) is an important and positive practice in the startup and formative years of a firm where complete trust and willingness to work hard (for little or no immediate reward) are critical for its survival.[4]


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