India’s next government must take on corruption

 

India has passed the half-way point in its chaotic elections where 814 million people are registered to vote. The last polling day is 12 May and results will be announced on 16 May.

One of the big questions is how the newly elected politicians will deliver on their campaign promises to tackle corruption. Too often those who speak up about corruption face reprisals and inaction.

Take Ruti, a 65-year-old widow who lives in Neori village. Home to just 218 people, the village is located in Jahrkhand, a state in eastern India. She is entitled to a widow’s pension but until she received help from Transparency International India, the local authorities had done nothing to help her.

One day back in September 2012, Neori’s population swelled to more than 2,500 when people from the region poured into the village to attend a help day on corruption in daily life, organised by our national chapter and local law students.

People spoke of not being able to get papers to confirm they own the land they live on; farmers complained about not receiving subsidies they are entitled to. Ruti explained her situation and found out how to get her pension paid.

People in Neori and all over India are fed up with corruption. One in two Indians had to pay bribes when dealing with public authorities, according to a global Transparency International survey released in 2013.

Politics is often seen as a big part of the problem, not the solution. People mistrust political parties: 86 per cent of Indians believe that their political parties are corrupt. And they are right. More than 30 per cent of members of the BJP and Congress parties in the lower house of the Indian parliament reportedly face criminal charges. The BJP and Congress are India’s biggest political parties.

Unfortunately the election season only adds to this concern. People will see candidates ignoring election spending limits; voters will be offered bribes for their votes, including TVs, cheap rice and other gifts.

It’s no wonder a political party has emerged on a single-issue anti-corruption ticket. It won the local New Delhi elections in December, tapping into the frustration that ordinary citizens feel every day.

For whoever wins the general election, the challenge will be turning their campaign commitments into reality.

Here are three key areas where action should be taken quickly:

First, put more information in the hands of the people.

Ordinary people need the power to fight back. The government should help educate citizens on how to use India’s 2005 Right to Information Law, one of the best in the world, to hold politicians and civil servants to account.

Requests for information about public decisions can unblock applications for licences and entitlements, and even speed up public works.

An estimated four million Indian citizens used it to seek information from public authorities in 2011-12. That is great progress, but only accounts for 0.3 per cent of India’s population.

But the government should also be proactive in publishing more information too, something that the act also mandates.

Second, whistleblowers need greater protection

The new Whistleblower Protection Act must be amended to apply to both the private and public sectors, and it must do more to safeguard those who speak up.

Today the law only applies to public sector employees. In addition, whistleblowers are forced to reveal their identity, putting themselves at great risk of retaliation if they expose wrong-doing.

Third, corruption must not pay

If ordinary Indians blow the whistle or request access to information that exposes corruption, the next government will have to ensure people who are charged go to jail. The judiciary needs more resources, despite recent efforts to speed up proceedings.

Today there is a case backlog of 31 million in the country’s courts that prompted one judge to estimate it would take 320 years to clear.  India has about 14 judges for every million people in the country compared to 100 per million in the United States.

A well-resourced judiciary is vital for fighting corruption. If the judicial process is so drawn out, criminals will assume that they will never be held to account.

India’s politicians need to channel this energy into constructive change. Empowering greater access to information and protecting whistleblowers would be good first steps.

Publishing more information about political party financing would also show India’s millions of voters who they are aligning their votes with as they go to the polls.

Carousel image: Creative commons, Flickr / Dave Lonsdale

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Rukshana Nanayakkara

About Rukshana Nanayakkara

Rukshana Nanayakkara is Regional Outreach Manager for the Asia Pacific Region at Transparency International.

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3 Responses to India’s next government must take on corruption

  1. s.vije haran 9 May 2014 at 11:57 am #

    good job & i jointed it

  2. madhukar chinchole 14 May 2014 at 6:45 pm #

    Now president of india sanction whistleblore law against anti corruption law but there is deficienciencies against applicant if he find guilty jailed & penalised then nobody take interest file the case because indian law
    require evidence because all is mille julle.
    madhukar chinchole

  3. jack loach 23 May 2014 at 4:14 pm #

    Sods —– Law.
    May —- 2014.

    For almost two decades we have strived to get justice for the injustice we have suffered at the hands of a world renowned bank— PICTET & CIE. BANK.

    Two yorkshiremen both running their own small family businesses trying to resolve the problem by taking all the correct legal procedures to recover their monies.

    The matter was raised in Parliament – twice– the FSA investigated the matter concluding that PICTET had rogues operating in their London Bank — but the rogues had left —saying no one left to prosecute.??? —– so there.

    We then approached the Financial Ombudsman Service. (FOS) — our case was dealt with by seven different people —- then our numerous E-Mails were ignored — nobody would speak to us ——-so there.

    We then asked the SFO ( Serious Fraud Office.) to investigate our case —- the criteria of our case ticked all their boxes. — we were instructed not to send them any documents/evidence.—— in fact they wrote to us advising us to go to the Citizen’s Advice Bureau.(CAB.)

    Richard Alderman the SFO boss —- who responded to our letter was the same man who would not investigate the “ Madoff” scandal or the “Libor” fiasco.
    The MP’s committee —- said he was sloppy— and the SFO was run like “ Fred Karno’s Circus” —– it was an office of fraud.—– so there.

    Our M.P. approached our local Chief Constable to investigate—– he was called—- Sir Norman Bettison— Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police —- a force that made “ Dad’s Army” look like the S.A.S. They were inept – corrupt —malicious — from top to bottom. We were criminally dealt with by the Forces Solicitor—- the Head of the Economic Crime Unit —-and the Chief Constable —– so there.

    We were then advised to pass our complaint against West Yorkshire Police to the I.P.C.C. – which we did — they advised us to make our complaint to —- the West Yorkshire Police — we did with reluctance — all we got was abuse and obfuscation. —– so there.

    Sir Norman Bettison —- The Forces solicitor— and the Head of the Economic Crime —- have all been removed from their posts and facing criminal allegations.
    —— so there.

    We even sought justice through the Courts — culminating in a visit to the Court of Appeal-London.— On leaving the Courts of Appeal that day our barrister a “rising star” informed us — that if that was Justice then you can keep it. He quit the law and moved to Canada —– so there.

    A few years later we learned that one of the judges ( Lord Justice) in our case at the Court of Appeal was related to a senior executive of the Pictet Bank —–so there.

    The Ministry of Justice passed our case to Lord Myners to investigate – we would rather have had Mickey Mouse or Donald Duck do it. —- to this day we don’t know — whether he did anything or not —- probably not —- seeing that his wife was on the Pictet Prix Board of Directors. —- so there.

    Pictet & Cie .Bank — voted private bank of the year 2013.
    Ivan Pictet —- Voted banker of the year 2012. —- the senior partner — lied on numerous occasions and had documents destroyed — also said genuine documents were forgeries. —– so there.

    Ivan Pictet in Oct. 2013 —- Given the Legion of Honour — but saying that —- honours were given to Hitler — Eichmann — Mussolini —Franco — he’s in fitting company. —-so there.

    MONTY RAPHAEL.Q.C. — Peters & Peters.London. They were the banks lawyers.
    Monty Raphael.Q.C. along with Ivan Pictet withheld crucial documents requested by the High Court —- the FSA —- and the police Fraud Squad. —-so there.

    Monty Raphael.Q.C. became an Honorary Queens Counsellor in March. 2012.
    Monty Raphael.Q.C. became a Master of the Bench in Nov.2012.
    An expert in Fraud —the Doyen of Fraud Lawyers. —– so there.

    This says a lot about Banks — the consensus of opinion is that they are highly paid “crooks” —- no wonder they voted Ivan Pictet banker of the year.

    It appears that crimes in the “establishment.” are honoured by their peers.
    “HONOURS AMONG THIEVES.”

    Full Story.—- “google or Yahoo”

    Insert.

    Ivan Pictet.Banker.
    Monty Raphael.Q.C.
    Ivan Pictet/Monty Raphael.

    Update — March. 2014.

    Pictet & Cie Bank —- List of Crimes.

    1996 —– F.S.A— Breach in London.

    2003 —– F.S.A. — States rogues operating in Pictet’s London office. Ivan Pictet states that documents were forgeries but were later proved to be genuine in the British Courts. He had documents destroyed in their London office –hoping to hide the crimes.

    2007 .- – – The Securities and Exchange Surveillance issued a recommendation that the Prime Minister and The Commissioner of the FSA to take disciplinary action against Pictet Asset Management – Japan Ltd.

    2008 .– Dec. – Pictet Bank state – ” We have never chosen any funds linked to Madoff.

    2011 – – – Madoff Trustees sue Pictet & Cie. Bank for $156 Million.

    2011- – – Pictet & Cie Bank abetted a Bribery Scheme – Oil company sues Pictet for $350Million

    2012 – – – April – Geneva Bank Pictet used in Offshore Tax Scheme. ( USA.)

    2012 — – June. — Published in Anglo INFO .Geneva.— USA Trust Fund Investors were sent false and fraudulent documents by Pictet Bank in order to collect large fees. ( Like MADOFF)
    Even after the SEC in the USA uncovered the fraud Pictet continued to charge fees and drain whatever was left in these accounts. Estimated that $90 million lost in this Pictet Ponzi scheme.

    2012 – – – July. — De – Spiegel. — states – Pictet Bank uses a letterbox company in Panama and a tax loophole involving investments in London to gain German millionaires as clients.

    2012 – – – August —- German Opposition Leader accuses Swiss Banks of “organised crime.”

    2013 — Jan.— Swiss MP’ table motion to freeze Tiab Mahmud’s assets of ” criminal origins”
    held in Swiss banks – $18 million held in 5 accounts at Pictet & Cie. Bank. Bahamas.

    Ironically the Pictet & Cie.Bank partners are bigger criminals than the criminals who have accounts in the their bank.

    The bank is now seeking to re-structure — to cut the partners liability – hoping to off load their decades of criminal responsibilty – and move onwards to carry out new crimes. The Germans are right — the bankers should go to prison if found guilty of financial crimes..

    Both Ivan Pictet and Monty Raphael.Q.C. conspired to withhold crucial documents requested by the High Court – the FSA — and the Police Fraud Squad.

    Written Parliamentary Questions received by the table office ..

    (1) To ask the secretary of state what steps he is taking to ensure that Swiss Banks such as Pictet & Cie do not evade criminal prosecution under EU law even when the illegal act is committed by a London based subsidiary.

    (2)To ask the secretary of state what steps he is taking to protect the rights of UK citizens who seek redress following criminal activities by Swiss banks with subsidiary offices located in London.

    Quote. ( America’s Top Lawyer .)
    You can be the richest man in the world with the best lawyers that money can buy but you cannot win against a man who has got nothing left to lose and is telling the truth.

    *** We note that there has been a sharp increase in Peters & Peters partners leaving to go to other practices. Moving does not alleviate them of any responsibility from any illegalities that may have occurred at Peters & Peters during their partnership tenure. From 1999 onwards.

    The consensus of opinion is the Pictet & Cie should be prosecuted , and that their U.K. banking licence should be taken away.

    Their Solicitors at Peters & Peters .London “ struck off and prosecuted..”

    *** Started campaign — June 6th.2008.
    5years —- approx 10 .5 million e-mails – – – but still no writs, injunctions or threats of litigation – – – WHY – – – because it is all true.

    *** . The bigger they are — the harder they fall.!!! In America —- they would have all been in prison for the last seven years.

    Feb 2013,— Pictet & Cie Bank Partners remove their unlimited liability.They realise that all their personal wealth is at risk , the people they have conned might want their money back.

    Full Story.***
    . ” Google ” or ” Yahoo” .

    Insert– ( Charles Pictet. Banker.
    Insert– ( Ivan Pictet.Banker.
    Insert– ( Jacques de Saussure.Banker.
    Insert– ( Nicolas Pictet. Banker.
    Insert– ( Jean-Francois Demole.Banker.
    Insert — ( Philippe Bertherat. Banker.
    Insert– ( Renaud de Planta. Banker.

    Update. March. 2014.
    Over the last three years we posted the following on hundreds of sites . —

    *** Were currently waiting for the West Yorkshire Police ;-
    (1) Chief Constable . Sir Norman Bettison
    (2) Forces Solicitor. Mike Percival.
    (3) Head of Economic Crime Unit. Det Chief Inspector. Steven Taylor.
    -to see if they continue to cover up this case like the FSA. – “ watch this space.”

    **** We can now state that all the above have been removed from their posts. All three facing criminal allegations.
    **** These three senior police officials assisted in covering up the crimes carried out by Pictet & Cie Bank and it’s lawyers.