Critics of Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led authorities preserve levelling two allegations — one, that Modi has a gentle nook for enterprise tycoons and two, he follows the diktats of the RSS. So, the choice to order a CBI inquiry to research former Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik’s purported claims of being supplied bribes assumes nice significance. Readers would recall that six months in the past, whereas talking at a perform in Jhunjhunu, Rajasthan, he had mentioned that whereas serving as Governor of J&Ok, a bribe of Rs 300 crore had been supplied for approving two recordsdata.
Malik claimed that “one of many secretaries instructed me that these are shady offers, however he can get Rs 150 crore every. I instructed him that I had come to Jammu and Kashmir with 5 kurta-pyjamas and would depart with that solely.” He additional disclosed that whereas one file pertained to a enterprise tycoon, the opposite one involved an “RSS functionary”. The previous J&Ok Governor additionally revealed that he had alerted Prime Minister Modi, who had instructed him “that there must be no compromise on corruption”.
When the previous J&Ok Governor mentioned “corruption was rampant in Kashmir the place the fee was 15 per cent as in comparison with 5 per cent in different components of the nation,” he was not exaggerating. The individuals of Kashmir witnessed corruption at its worst and have lengthy suffered its penalties. This is the reason the choice of handing over the investigation for these bribery associated incidents to CBI is a optimistic step, in line with the federal government’s assurance of ‘zero tolerance’ in opposition to corruption.
Detractors could dismiss this inquiry as a farce and even allege that that is being completed solely to keep away from embarrassment prompted to the Modi authorities with the title of a enterprise tycoon and an RSS functionary cropping up. Nevertheless, this argument isn’t convincing. It should be remembered that Malik had been chosen as Governor of J&Ok by the Centre, and being the present Governor of Meghalaya, it’s evident that he hasn’t fallen from grace or humiliated by the federal government. So, his allegations are clearly not influenced by some private grudge or vengeance.
It goes to the credit score of each the Centre and the Union Territory of J&Ok that they’ve taken concrete steps to weed out corruption in addition to put an finish to unlawful receipt of cash via ‘hawala’ that inimical forces had been sending throughout for separatists and their supporters to additional anti-national actions. The Hurriyat management claims innocence and has tried to minimize these expenses by projecting themselves as victims of political vendetta.
Nevertheless, with sting operations carried out by non-public media channels, during which some Hurriyat leaders could be heard accepting that they’d orchestrated public unrest via financial allurements and had been keen to take action if paid, the cat is out of the bag. The truth that senior Hurriyat chief Syed Ali Shah Geelani resigned from the All Occasion Hurriyat Convention as a result of rampant corruption throughout the separatist conglomerate leaves little question that NIA framing expenses in opposition to a number of top-ranking Hurriyat leaders is definitely not a ‘witch hunt’.
The J&Ok authorities’s complete warfare in opposition to medication too is a optimistic step that may assist in hunting down corruption, as a result of main proceeds of drug trafficking get funnelled into prison actions and anti-social actions. Let’s not neglect that earlier than its bifurcation into union territories, the erstwhile state of J&Ok ranked quantity 2 within the nation’s index of most corrupt states. With corruption having taken roots and flourishing in J&Ok, eliminating this menace that had permeated each sphere of governance and paperwork can’t occur in a single day.
Former J&Ok Governor Malik has completed so much to sort out the multi-headed hydra of corruption, and current Governor Manoj Sinha is taking ahead the anti-corruption marketing campaign with missionary zeal. Contemplating the large sum of money concerned, it’s however pure that people and teams with vested pursuits or for monetary beneficial properties will strive their degree greatest to derail investigation, impede judicial proceedings and demonise the institution and its establishments investigating monetary irregularity. The Centre or the Union Territory of J&Ok shouldn’t succumb to such motivated techniques and should preserve sustained strain on the corrupt. There’s additionally a crying want for expediting investigations and trial of the culprits in order that justice isn’t delayed.
The Centre has been greater than beneficiant in granting funds to J&Ok for growth and poverty alleviation programmes. Sadly, as a result of lack of requisite checks and balances in addition to accountability, J&Ok’s ecosystem of corruption has thrived unchecked for a number of years and this has disadvantaged the peculiar individuals of the advantages they rightly deserved. Nevertheless, gentle on the finish of the tunnel is in sight and one is hopeful that individuals will elect sincere leaders as a substitute of falling prey to the candy discuss of those that have solely been plundering public wealth.
The creator is Editor of Brighter Kashmir, TV commentator, political analyst and columnist. The views expressed on this article are these of the creator and don’t characterize the stand of this publication.