Thursday, August 10, 2006

how to fight corruption

We all know the theory. At bottom it is a matter of a change in values and culture.

But such a change can be helped or hindered by legislation and by agencies dedicated to such change.

In India, corruption is dropping dramatically because of the "Right to Know" legislation, combined with the actions of NGOs committed to helping the poor fight the traditional millennia-old oppression of the poor (usually the depressed and "untouchable", but nowadays also those who are merely economically disadvantaged).

A readable account appears at:

Of course, the law alone does not help. It is quite easy to imagine corrupt NGOs. Fortunately, the market operates with NGOs. If one NGO were to become corrupt, the people would soon cotton on to the fact that other NGOs are not and go to those. Theoretically, it is not beyond the bounds of possibility that all NGOs would become bribe-seekers. But then the poor would be able to take help from any individual, because it is not NGOs alone who can enable the poor to utilise the law.

So what is needed to break the bondage of corruption in any particular case is: the law plus one individual or organisation.

Now that there is a "Right to Know" law, the only thing keeping corruption in place is the lack of NGOs and motivated individuals.

It will be fascinating to see how long it takes to eradicate corruption completely from India. Which will be a useful indicator of how many motivated NGOs and individuals there are in India. Sphere: Related Content

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