Need for stringent laws to curb corruption: JP

Need for stringent laws to curb corruption: JP
Highlights

Dr Jayaprakash Narayan: Need for stringent laws to curb corruption, the unfolding titanium mining scam in Andhra Pradesh be viewed as an opportunity to usher in laws to ensure sure and swift punishment to the corrupt.

  • Special courts should be set up to try corrupt politicians
  • Swift & strong punishment, confiscation of assets needed
  • Lok Satta had moved SC against 2G allocations, got it scrapped
  • As a result, Central govt earned Rs 50,000 cr by way of auction

Hyderabad: Loksatta Party national President Dr Jayaprakash Narayan suggested that the unfolding titanium mining scam in Andhra Pradesh be viewed as an opportunity to usher in laws to ensure sure and swift punishment to the corrupt. It may be recalled that the United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation has asked the State Crime Investigation Department to “provisionally arrest” of KVP Ramachandra Rao, MP and Adviser to Late Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy in connection with the mining license scam.

Dr Jayaprakash Narayan: Need for Stringent Laws to Curb Corruption

KVP has been named along with five others by a US grand jury for their suspected roles in an $18.5 million scheme to bribe Indian officials for a titanium mining contract in Andhra Pradesh. JP said that corruption can be mitigated to a large extent if special courts are constituted to go into the allegations against politicians and officials, and mete out swift and deterrent punishment, including confiscation of the entire property of the corrupt is awarded. The corrupt should be made to face the prospect of losing power, prestige, property and a long jail term. If such punishments are meted out to people in 10 cases in every state per year, corruption could be curbed.

Addressing a media conference, JP said that under a law enacted in the US in 1977, the American companies cannot give bribes to further their business in other countries. Lockheed officials who bribed Japanese Prime Minister Tanaka were jailed under the law. The Japanese Prime Minister had to quit. Celebrated CEO Rajat Gupta of Indian origin was sentenced to a jail term and hefty fine for abetting insider trading in shares was imposed on him. Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich was sentenced to a 14-year jail term for seeking election campaign funds for nominating a senator. An Indian doctor couple had to part with all properties and undergo a jail term for defrauding the American healthcare system.

JP also demanded that the Union Government bring back nearly $500 billion illegally stashed abroad by the Indians on a war footing, and prevent stashing of nearly $80 billion a year. Such a measure will come in handy to tackle current account deficit problems and funding the sorely needed infrastructure in the country.

JP recalled that he had submitted a Bill to amend the Prevention of Corruption Act in 2009 itself to the then Chief Minister Rajasekhara Reddy and opposition leader N Chandrababu Naidu. They had been trading allegations of corruption against each other in the Assembly. Once he took up the initiative, the two sparring parties entered into an unwritten truce and kept quiet subsequently. It is time the parties stopped enacting such dramas, JP alleged.

He called for allotment of scarce natural resources like spectrum, iron ore and coal mines on transparent and competitive bidding to ward off corruption. The Supreme Court had cancelled the illegally awarded 122 2G spectrum licences on a petition filed by the Lok Satta and helped the government raise more than Rs 50,000 crore in re-auction of a part of spectrum, he added.

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