When we talk of corruption, we must understand what corruption really means. The simple and straightforward meaning of corruption is to get work done by means of illegal gratification.
At one time, not very long back, just a few decades back, to dabble in corrupt practices was something to be ashamed of, and a known corrupt individual was singalled out. People would point the charging finger at him and talk scandals in whispers about him. This goes to show that, though corruption was there, it was a very rare phenomena, a hush hush affair. Both the corrupt person and the general public being awe struck about the whole affair. The corrupt person hid his misdeed which in turn goes to show that there was fear in the minds of the corrupt, the fear of being exposed and being punished.
As time passed by, this scenario on the front of corruption undertook an absolute somersault as if. The very attitude of the corrupt, and the public changed altogether. The malady spread through the length and breadth of the country, and the world. As the virus of corruption was allowed to take its toll, it spread and continued to spread through the passage of decades.
The situation as it stands today is that, corruption is no slur on any individual, it has by now become a way of life, it has been so closely woven into our life patterns that, no one thinks much about it. This is because the system has been let loose and in so many decades everyone, yes, everyone is so involved in corruption that the topic is not worth any discussions. Just as life style includes a bungalow, car, servants, club etc., it also includes corruption.
The entire system has been effected by this virus and it is now like a cancer absolutely incurable. The cancer has spread throughout the body system and now there is no cure for it. Only in the early stages, if the cancer had been treated it may have never taken such a dangerous posture.
The position as it stands today is so very pathetic that, it is a wonder who will punish whom for corruption? All, yes, all are neck deep plunged in this malady. When every organ of the system, every individual in the system is corrupt to the hilt, who is there to set things right. The fact is that today corruption has seeped deep into every corner of our system and there appears to be no light at the end of the tunnel.
Let us for a moment analyze how this virus was allowed to grow. The answer to this question is quite simple. Since this cancer was not treated in its earlier stages, it grew to this magnum size, which today defies any cure. It is not that people did not know about the virus entering the system but, it was ignored and so the result is here for all of us to see. If it had been nipped in the bud just when it had raised its ugly head, it would not have dared to grow.
Now, since this did not happen, the malady spread with the passage of time and took the present shape. If it had been tackled at its very inception, more and more people would not have joined the bandwagon and the situation would not have been as it is now. No corrupt person was ever punished for his/her corrupt practices, it gave an impetus to others to become so. Moreover, since there was no punishment, the element of fear also flew to the winds, and people dared it all.
More and more people crossed the fence as there were greener pastures across. This situation led to the present day scenario when it is like trying to touch the moon to look for an honest man. All the world’s glamour and happiness attracted more and more people and corruption became an obvious way of life.
With the deadly combination of good and comfortable life, and no, no punishment for being corrupt gave a boost to the industry of corruption and the last straw on the camel’s back was this corruption being aided by the highest places of authority – the politician. When there was absolute support from the highest rung of the social order, the politician, the very thought of leaving it was not to be.
Now when the virus has struck the system we hear from pulpits and platforms long drawn out speeches on uprooting corruption. This is however now a Herculean task. However, even at this stage, we can make an effort. This is possible only if we give stringent punishment to the corrupt, no matter whom. Side by side, if we can find a handful of honest people they should also be simultaneously rewarded and honoured. With this twin treatment, maybe we see a reduction of the menace after some time. Let us remember it is more difficult to improve a decayed system rather than make a new clean system.