India among most corrupt countries, says Advani

Sunday, January 30, 2011

NEW DELHI - Senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader L.K. Advani Sunday said India had slipped three points to the 87th spot in worldwide transparency and corruption index. He attributed the fall to alleged corrupt practices in the 2010 Commonwealth Games (CWG).

“It can hardly be denied that the year just concluded has caused extreme distress and depression to the citizens not only because the common man’s family budget has been totally upset by food inflation and the cost of petrol diesel etc., but also because our country has come to be known all over the world as among the most corrupt countries of the world,” Advani wrote on his blog.

Citing a report on a website, Advani said India had slipped to 87th spot in Transparency International’s latest ranking of nations based on the level of corruption. He said the ‘Corruption Perception Index’ report covering the public sector in 178 countries shows that India fell by three positions from its ranking of 84th in 2009.

Quoting from the report, Advani said: “The perception about corruption in India seems to have increased primarily due to alleged corrupt practices in the recently held Commonwealth Games (CWG) in Delhi.”

He said the four investigating agencies - the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC), Enforcement Directorate (ED), Income Tax Department and the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) - were looking into allegations of corruption against the organisers of the Games.

Advani said while the scene is really depressing on the national level, one feels proud to hear reports that have been coming from Gujarat lately.

He said this year’s “Vibrant Gujarat” attracted 101 countries and about 1,400 foreign delegates.

“MoUs (Memorandum of Understanding) worth $21 billion, that is, roughly one-third of India’s GDP (Gross Domestic Product), were signed in two days,” he said.

He said Mahatma Mandir, the venue of this year’s Vibrant Gujarat conclave, was built in just 82 days.

“The project conceived was so ambitious that many doubted as to how such a project could be completed so soon. But all credit to Narendrabhai that he saw to it that this monumental splendour located on a 34 acre plot was constructed in just 82 days,” the blog said.

“The achievements in Gujarat have a lot to do with Narendra Bhai’s astounding success in making the state’s administration effectively curb red tape and corruption. It is this success that attracts entrepreneurs, Indian as well as foreign very naturally to Gujarat,” he wrote.

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