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Chapter 3 Corruption in India: Can it be controlled?

The Many Faces of Public Management Reform in the Asia-Pacific Region

ISBN: 978-1-84950-639-7, eISBN: 978-1-84950-640-3

ISSN: 0732-1317

Publication date: 1 January 2009


One cannot mandate honesty.– Veerappa Moily, Chair,Second Administrative Reforms Commission, 2007India did not invent corruption, but it seems to excel in it. Transparency International, (TI) in its September 2007 Corruption Perception Index, placed India 72nd (tying with China and Brazil) with its neighbors Sri Lanka at 94th, Pakistan 138th, and Bangladesh 162nd as among the most corrupt of the 180 nations it surveyed. Denmark, Finland, and New Zealand stood at the top as the least corrupt, while Mynamar and Somalia are ranked at the bottom as the most corrupt. In 2008, India was ranked at 74th (Transparency International, 2007, 2008). In its 2005 study, TI found that as many as 62% of Indians believe corruption is real and in fact had first hand experience of paying bribes (Transparency International, 2005). Three-fourths in the survey also believe that the level of corruption in public services has only increased during 2004–2005. It is estimated that a total of about $5 billion are paid annually as bribes. The police are ranked as the most corrupt, followed by lower judiciary and Land Administration. Yet Suresh Pachauri, the Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Government of India, declared: “Government is fully committed to implement its policy of zero tolerance against corruption. It is moving progressively to eradicate corruption by improving transparency and accountability” (Pachauri, 2008). This is a rather sorry state for a country known as the largest working democracy.


Tummala, K.K. (2009), "Chapter 3 Corruption in India: Can it be controlled?", Wescott, C., Bowornwathana, B. and Jones, L.R. (Ed.) The Many Faces of Public Management Reform in the Asia-Pacific Region (Research in Public Policy Analysis and Management, Vol. 18), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 45-72.



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