1. Introduction: A common phenomenon; the main cause
2. Effects of corruption on society; people, Govt. good values
3. Factors that contribute to corruption; seven factors
4. Remedies: four steps
Today corruption is almost a world phenomenon. It is, in fact, a universal problem, having existed in all ages. It has clung to mankind like an incurable disease. In view of its general prevalence, scholars have devoted a good deal of thought and attention to this vise. The true reason for corruption is a desire to get rich by any means. In a free and competitive society, investment of capital can yield reasonable returns only in the long run. But corruption or acceptance of bribes promises a rapid change in financial conditions. Originally the police and WAPDA were notorious for corruption but now the evil has spread to almost every department of Government.
Even courts of justice and education are no exceptions.
The prevalence of corruption has created disappointment and discontentment among the community. The machinery of government gets rusted and ceases to work in an intended manner.
Corruption decreases respect for law and a sense of allegiance to the government. In a society governed by corrupt officials, the whole system of moral, ethical, and religious values is impaired.
The distinction between right and wrong disappears. Revolutions and military takeovers become common. Every student of history knows that one of the main causes of the downfall of the nations has been corruption. In his famous book “ The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire”, Gibben has stated that as long as there were even two percent honest men in the Roman administration, the Empire lingered on.
The factors that contribute to the prevalence of corruption differ from country to country. Those that are common to most countries including Pakistan are seven. First, the general economic condition of the country is poor and everyone tries to feather his nest. Secondly, the rates of remuneration of public functionaries are low, and they are tempted to accept bribes. Thirdly, the general price level and the standard of living are very high: honest means of a person fails him. Fourthly, social conditions and customs demand a lavish expenditure of money. Finally, there exists no strong opinion against corruption; it has been accepted as a common thing. Sixthly, laws confer on the public servants’ vast powers and discretions; they take undue advantage of that. Lastly, there are no adequate means to prevent corruption or bring the offenders to book. The route out corruption, a complete change of the political, social, and economic system is necessary. No revision of pay scales. However liberal can reduce corruption. The reason is that the wealth targets aimed at by corrupt officials are very high. Similarly, a mere change in government is quite is ineffective. The new government has to rely on permanent services for its day to day administration. Unless the motive is an inducement for corruption is removed, corruption will continue. Four steps, however, may be of some use. First, wide discretionary powers should be taken away from individual officials. Secondly, the Anti-corruption department should be made more effective. Thirdly, the minds of the people should be changed by the prevalence of moral values. Lastly, the punishment for corruption should be more exemplary.
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