The word “Corruption” has taken from the Latin word “corruptus” means to break. Literally, it means “a broken object”. Corruption means to use your power in a negative way. Corruption is a form of behaviour, which takes you away from ethics, morality, traditions, law and virtues. World Bank defines corruption in this way that it is the abuse of public office for private gains. According to the National Anti-Corruption Strategy, corruption is a behaviour of officeholders to enrich themselves unlawfully and induce others to do so by misusing the position in which they are placed.
Power does not corrupt. Fear corrupts, perhaps the fear of a loss of power – JOHN STEINBACK
Pakistan is suffering badly from this disease. It spreads on every institution of Pakistan like blood cancer. Pakistan is the 116th least corrupt country among 176 countries, according to the 2016 Corruption Perceptions Index reported by Transparency International. Pakistan is improving itself in ranking as compared to previous years, 139th in 2009, 127th in 2013 and 118th in 2015. The averaged rank of Pakistan is 108.29 (1995-2016). Highest rank is 144 in 2005 and the lowest rank is 39 in 1995.
Our Leader, Quaid-e-Azam said in Constituent Assembly on 11th August 1947 “Corruption is a curse in India and amongst Muslims, especially the so-called educated and intelligentsia. Unfortunately, it is this class that is selfish and morally and intellectually corrupt.” Lack of good governance, accountability and negative bureaucracy are making the roots of corruption strong. Lack of political will to fight against corruption resulted in Supreme court to take sue motto action against corruption in mega projects, PIA, Steel mill and rental power plant. Pakistan has made laws to overcome this pathetic approach. These laws are defined as follows:
➢ Preventing Act of Anti-Corruption
1947,1950 The princely state Bahawalpur started this act in 1947 for preventing corruption. This act became the law of Pakistan in 1950.
➢ National Accountability Bureau Ordinance 1999
The establishment of National Accountability(NAB) was passed on 16 November 1999. It works mainly against corruption, financial crime and economic terrorism in Pakistan and its ordinance directly to the individuals capture without any political interference.
➢ Provincial Legislation Act
The government of Pakistan is responsible for provincial legislation and look at all the province legislation against corruption. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Anti-Corruption Legislation This legislation adds the various functions as a transparency for the citizen.
There are two types of corruption. One is petty corruption. It is corruption in the lower order. Nation and other simple professional people do this kind of corruption. Like milk-man mixes water in milk. Another type is called state corruption. It is corruption in higher order. Prime minister, political leaders and bureaucrats do this type of corruption. It is found to be increasing because of a lack of accountability and regulation. Government is filling its own pocket rather than spending money on people. People who are deprived of education, food, security and health. Due to this, many people do not pay taxes, because they know that the Government will not help them. Our politicians in past many decades were fond of this unethical approach, hence many of themm were corrupt. This was the reason that current government, perticularly Pakistan’s Prime Minister has takne them in police custody. More over Mr. Khan is very eager to punish these culprits and looting the country for atleast a decade. Their job is to make money, not to serve people.
Political instability, unemployment, weak accountability, the absent role of media and people, violations of rules are a major cause of increasing corruption in Pakistan. Another reason for corruption is that we are not abiding rules. Every citizen of the country should abide by the law of the country. We are not paying taxes. We are not doing our works on time and properly. A policeman gets bribe and releases criminals.
Teacher rarely goes to school to teach but collects his/her salary regularly. Feudal Lords builds schools and converts them into a guest house or animal planet. Doctor, who is a government servant, runs his own private hospital. An engineer is using sub-standard material in construction. From Student to Leader, everyone is doing corruption according to their own approach. The reason, which makes people corrupt is low salaries. Everyone wants a good living life. They find a way of standard life. It is human nature, they want more and more. They do not accomplish their dreams due to a few salaries. They become corrupt to achieve their goal.
It is true that they do not have any other way to fulfil their wants. Judiciary and media are not playing an active role to stop corruption. Lawyers and judges are given bribes to change the decision. Judiciary is not providing justice to common people. Laws are only for Poor. Rich can do anything and no punishment will be given to him. Judiciary is not bringing culprits into the gallows of laws. Media has a great role in our society, but it is doing work in the name of money.
Media starts showing the corruption of politicians or other leaders, they give media money and stop them showing reality. There is an influence of individual on institutions. In rural areas, the feudal lord has great power and full control on institutions, like in police, civil hospitals, schools, municipal office. He compels them to do corruption, otherwise, they may lose their jobs. A senior manager in a public or private organization giving a job to a friend or relative bypassing a proper selection process.
Corruption affects our individual and social life. It is the third greatest problem in the business of Pakistan. Corruption in institutions causes a defect in their budget and causes a defect in their budget. They increase the prices of their products to overcome on budget. In this way, a citizen has to buy costly things. We do not pay taxes and economy of government go down and the government impose new taxes on gas, electricity, CNG and petroleum. The country loses many years of development efforts because of corruption. The money for development programmes; like roads, hospitals, health centres, schools are eaten and the progress of the country badly affected. Judiciary becomes weak when judges are sold on the money. The citizen becomes hopeless from the government that it will not provide him with justice. Most experts think that corruption is one of the most difficult problems in Pakistan.
It is a big threat to our economy. Some steps can curb corruption. Kurt Cobian says “The duty of youth is to challenge corruption”. Youth have the power to overcome this disease. Citizens and institutions should be united. An accountability system should make strong. NAB, FIA and FBR should be free in every way. When these institutions will start working independent, the country comes on the track of progress. Recently, NAB has recovered 275 billion rupees. Media should play a role in this useless and pathatic approach that becomes the reason of the downfall of the nations. Seminars should be held to aware people about this bad act and to give them a way to save themselves from it. Talk shows should be telecasted, where think tanks are invited to talk and give suggestions on this issue.
Salaries of employees should be increased. Affective judiciary system should be made. Laws are equal for all. Ex-prime minister Nawaz Shareef was proved guilty on corruption case and now he is not eligible for election forever. This decision proves that our judiciary system is improving. This is a positive thing and will help in stopping corruption. The citizen should follow rules. We say our politicians are corrupt and we do not think that we are also guilty of corruption. We do not pay taxes. We do illegal thing, which harms our economy.
These things should be abolished. The citizen should vote to the right person based on quality. Our nation costs vote on favouritism basis. They vote to their family member, caste-mate, friend and feudal lord of the village. Due to these wrong decisions, we give authority to that man, who is not capable of it. He misuses his powers and does corruption. Right thinking will give us the right people and our government system will be good. United against corruption is the way to defeat corruption. We all should be united. Bureaucracy, media, judiciary, accountability and citizen, unity of these institutions will make a strong weapon, which helps the country to kill corruption
Note: The author was supervised By Mr Farhan Ali Soomro (PhD Scholar) & Teaching Assistant Department of Public Administration, Faculty of Management Sciences, Shah Abdul Latif University, Khairpur.