Not ‘corruption’ again

Someone has to start saying it so it may as well be me. I am sick to death of hearing the word corruption. I am sick of media frenzy over Arvind Kejriwal's latest 'expose'. And, most of all, I am sick of India being painted as the most corrupt country in the world by a bunch of leftists who would be happiest if we abandoned democracy for a more totalitarian system of governance. A system in which a super-bureaucrat called Shri Lokpal would find you guilty till proven innocent. If you do not believe this, please examine the manner in which Kejriwal and his team have behaved in recent weeks. They have demanded the resignation of senior ministers on the basis of information gleaned from dubious CAG reports and declared them guilty after media trials that have made me more than slightly ashamed to be a journalist.

Inspired by the attention Kejriwal is given in our daily news bulletins, we now have the former army chief jumping on the bandwagon. Was this not the same man who spent his entire tenure as chief arguing about his birth date so he could get another year in office? How is it that he never noticed corruption in arms deals while he was in the army? How is it that he did not notice that the government who appointed him was corrupt and 'anti-people'? How is it that the retired police officers and officials who have all leapt onto the corruption bandwagon remained silent while they were in government service?

So, can we start getting some perspective here? Yes, there is huge corruption in India but nearly all of it is related to convoluted regulations that make India one of the most difficult countries in which to do business. This inevitably means that businessmen are forced to pay politicians and officials in the course of conducting their business. It does not mean that every businessman in India is a crook. India has, since the economic reforms began in 1991, thrown up some of the finest companies that have earned respect in the highest forums of international business. Yet Kejriwal and his band of leftists would have us believe that the only thing that exists in India is 'crony capitalism'.

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