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July 05, 2019 |

Proactive civil society

Rampart corruption in the state of Jammu and Kashmir has without a break factored in defective governance, a fact that the civil society is well aware of. The criticism in the last many years has usually been directed against the governments headed by political leadership that keeps on changing.  Zero tolerance to corruption instead of coming as a continuous stream has come in short duration impulsive actions with the message that no government has ever committed to sustain anti-corruption movement. What is unfortunate is that the civil society has not supported or pressed for weeding out corruption the way it should have. While anti-corruption movements start with the people, here in the state people often wait for the change of political guard to witness a change in the governance.  The power of raising voice in unison can be gauged from the fact that governments across the world haves been put under tremendous pressure to concede to the demand of people, which is strong legislation against corruption and transparency in governance. Although successive governments have been pledging to root out corruption in the state, there has been little headway in this direction. Apart from government’s inaction against the culprits, one of the main reasons for the high level of corruption has been the absence of a strong civil society movement. We have become habitual of blaming politicians for all the evils and exonerating ourselves of any responsibility. Worse, instead of applying pressure on the incumbent government we keep on waiting for a better option, for better times, only to realize that one government is no different than the other. Owing to our complacency, corruption has made inroads everywhere in our society. The irony is that there are instances when people feel that corruption and greasing palms is necessary evil. If it is evil, it cannot be necessary, cannot be justified. We expect government to eradicate corruption while we ourselves have accepted bribery as part of the system. We often hear politicians deliver lengthy speeches against corruption when some of the biggest scandals have taken place under political patronage. Yet we expect them to eradicate the evil. We may talk endlessly against corruption, but it will not address the problem. Our complaining will also not help. We need to act and act now otherwise corruption will become so ingrained in our system that we will meekly surrender to it. The civil society has to shun its approach of distancing from issues like corruption. It must take the lead.   

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July 05, 2019 |

Proactive civil society

              

Rampart corruption in the state of Jammu and Kashmir has without a break factored in defective governance, a fact that the civil society is well aware of. The criticism in the last many years has usually been directed against the governments headed by political leadership that keeps on changing.  Zero tolerance to corruption instead of coming as a continuous stream has come in short duration impulsive actions with the message that no government has ever committed to sustain anti-corruption movement. What is unfortunate is that the civil society has not supported or pressed for weeding out corruption the way it should have. While anti-corruption movements start with the people, here in the state people often wait for the change of political guard to witness a change in the governance.  The power of raising voice in unison can be gauged from the fact that governments across the world haves been put under tremendous pressure to concede to the demand of people, which is strong legislation against corruption and transparency in governance. Although successive governments have been pledging to root out corruption in the state, there has been little headway in this direction. Apart from government’s inaction against the culprits, one of the main reasons for the high level of corruption has been the absence of a strong civil society movement. We have become habitual of blaming politicians for all the evils and exonerating ourselves of any responsibility. Worse, instead of applying pressure on the incumbent government we keep on waiting for a better option, for better times, only to realize that one government is no different than the other. Owing to our complacency, corruption has made inroads everywhere in our society. The irony is that there are instances when people feel that corruption and greasing palms is necessary evil. If it is evil, it cannot be necessary, cannot be justified. We expect government to eradicate corruption while we ourselves have accepted bribery as part of the system. We often hear politicians deliver lengthy speeches against corruption when some of the biggest scandals have taken place under political patronage. Yet we expect them to eradicate the evil. We may talk endlessly against corruption, but it will not address the problem. Our complaining will also not help. We need to act and act now otherwise corruption will become so ingrained in our system that we will meekly surrender to it. The civil society has to shun its approach of distancing from issues like corruption. It must take the lead.   

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