Essay on Corruption Surveys and Indices throughout India

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Though India is credited with having made considerable progress in terms of economic reform over the past few years, corruption is perceived to be widespread and entrenched at all levels of the political and administrative system. India ranks 84 from 180 countries surveyed in Transparency International’s Report.

2009 Corruption Perception Index (CPI), with a score of 3.4 (0 being the most corrupt and 10 being the last) since the first iterations of the index, India has scored between 2.7 and 3.5, indicating that – despite some progress – corruption continues to be perceived as rampant and endemic by the various CPI sources.

Similarly, the World Bank Governance Indicators suggest little change over the years. The coun­try performs consistently above average on indicators of voice and accountability, government effec­tiveness and the rule of law, but poorly in terms of regulatory quality and control of corruption. Its rating for political stability is particularly weak.

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Freedom House 2010 comes to similar conclusions, noting that government effectiveness and accountability continue to be undermined by the close connections between crime and politics, weak government institutions and widespread corruption.

Global Corruption Barometer 2009: Political parties are perceived to be the most corrupt institu­tion by the Indians, according to 2009 Global Corruption Barometer. The Barometer, a global public opinion survey, released today by Transparency International (Tl), found 58 per cent of the Indian re­spondents identified politicians to be single most corrupt individuals. 45 per cent of the people sampled feel that the government is ineffective in addressing corruption in the country.

Civil servants /public officials were rated by 13 per cent of respondents as the second most corrupt institution in the country. Other institutions that were polled included the parliament/legislature, the private sector, media and the judiciary.

The survey in India, conducted at the national level between October and November last year also indicated that the perception of government effectiveness in relation to addressing corruption had im­proved from 2007. Forty two per cent of people analysed, said that government’s actions in the fight against corruption was effective.

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The Barometer, now in its sixth edition, surveyed 73,132 people in 69 countries including 12 coun­tries from Asia Pacific. In India, the survey was conducted in five metros – Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Bangalore. The main findings for India are as follows:

» 10 per cent of the respondents feel that Parliament and law making bodies are corrupt

» 9 percent of those surveyed consider business and private sector to be corrupt

» 8 per cent consider that corruption in media affect the lives of people, and » 3 per cent consider the judiciary to be corrupt.

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Petty Bribery and Economic Crisis Poor Punished Twice:

The 2009 Barometer shows the poorest families continue to be punished by petty bribe demand. Across the board, low-income response dents were more likely to be met with bribe demands than high-income respondents.

While only nine per cent of the respondents reported having paid bribes, Transparency International India’s (Til) Inch Corruption study 2008 that surveyed corruption in the below poverty line sector shows that the poor are forced to cough up about Rs 9000 million as bribe to avail basic and need based services.

Petty corrup­tion denies people their entitlement to basic and need based services, as a result of which the poor find themselves at the losing end of corruption.

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