Saturday, September 03, 2011

I am corrupt, You?

As you all know, I am a simple, God Loving, Wife Fearing, Middle Class Indian.  I must say,  after this Anna Phenomenon, and Media saying that it’s all because of the Great Indian Middle Class, I am more than proud to belong to this class. Other wise, after buying a 1 ½  BHK, carpet area of 480 sq ft, with borrowed money, in Mumbai suburbs, I had started thinking that I had moved up a notch.

The recent furor over corruption always made me wonder–When it comes to corruption, why we only talk about the public servants?  Are they the only ones  who could be corrupt , no one else?

Well, this made me do what any average middle class, internet accessing Indian would do, Google “What is corruption?”.

And these were the results –
Dishonest or fraudulent conduct by those in power, typically involving bribery . Lack of integrity or honesty (especially susceptibility to bribery); use of a position of trust for dishonest gain.

Then I also checked “What is bribe?” –
Money or any other valuable consideration given or promised with a view to persuade or induce the behavior of person.

Now that I knew what corruption and bribe were, I was clear that Team Anna is in the right direction -Average Indian Middle Class can’t be corrupt. 

I was about to switch-off and hit the bed when my daughter came in begging, Papa please explain the meaning of this -

Bura Jo Dekhan Main Chala, Bura Naa Milya Koye !

Jo Munn Khoja Apnaa, To Mujhse Bura Naa Koye !!


By the time I was done explaining, I knew something was wrong.
  • When my son refused to eat green vegetables, didn’t I say -if you eat this for a week I’ll buy you a new BeyBlade.
  • Didn’t I say “yes” when the computer service guy asked “Sir, got some new games, should I copy on your laptop”.
  • Didn’t I visit www.songs.pk to download the latest Bodyguard songs composed by the very talented Himesh Reshammiya and Pritam.
  • Didn’t I say “yes” when the interior designer said, “Sir, if you insist on full bill – will have to pay service tax”.
  • Didn’t I pay 500 to a temple agent to get a quicker access to God when I visited the Shani temple.
  • Parents doing kids' homework or school projects to ensure that kids get better grades.
  • Agar tu mujhe tera program(source code) dega toh main tujhe us ladki ka contact details dunga! via 
  • Don't we say "God, please get my job done, 101 ka prasad chadhaunga" via
Before you start criticising the "system" , just think - Is Hamam mein sab nange hain !. 


 PS: If you got some more examples of corruption in every day life, feel free to tweet or comment, will be happy to include ( with credits ).

12 comments:

Aditya Nandode said...

So true!

I once did this "Agar tu mujhe tera program(source code) dega toh main tujhe us ladki ka contact details dunga! For an assignment in college days!" to a friend, and got what I wanted! :p

Dhirendra said...

Dear Vikas,
Congratulations for so frankly putting your personal conduct and issues in public.
But I find it hard to understand your point, when you say: "Before you start criticizing the "system" , just think - Is Hamam mein sab nange hain !."
Some questions have cropped in my mind, if possible, please answer.
1. Do you think it is ok to allow the status quo, even if it is suffocating? I mean, if people are paying bribe habitually, then is it unfair to seek such system where they might not be forced to be a ‘bribe giver’? (My underlying assumption is that ‘people are naturally good’ and only prevailing insecurity creates such setting which cause them to pay bribe.)
2. Does my fault give legitimacy to your faults? Point to be noted is this: you are under oath to safeguard me from such “faults”, both, of my own and that of yours? I am common man and you are leader- my role is to err and learn, your role is to guide me and lead me to a situation where I stop making more errors. So can you hide behind argument that “I wouldn’t do my job because you are you?”
3. Why a person of your intellectual status find it hard to understand one point: “People are opposed to corrupt practices of govt, not because of their need to flaunt righteousness, but because their life is becoming more like a living hell due to twin assault of corruption (as your dictionary says, DONE BY THOSE IN POWER, who earn their salary and incentive and our trust, for doing their work) and Mehangai’.
And therefore, under such trying circumstances, your attempt to preach virtue is misplaced.
4. What you aim to convey in this article?
a. Government can be corrupt as long as people offer Prasad in Temple?
b. Government can get away of its wrongdoings, just because we copy Software?
c. Make people accept the fact that they are corrupt? Why?
d. My office manager has right to steal money from my account just because I happen to be buying things without bill?
Thanks for starting this debate.

Vikas P Goel said...

Thanks Dhirendra, Pertinent points. Very limited point I am trying to make is let's start with ourselves.

Dhirendra said...

I have one analogy i wish to put in current context:
Suppose I hire a driver, due to my limited driving skill, through open recruitment. One day i realised that my driver was rashly driving and its tendencies were becoming more severe.
I try to make him understand by simply asking him, not to be rash. He ignores me. I again admonish him. He replies: Dont degrade/attack the institution of "driver" and "how dare you question my driving skill when you yourself is bad driver? and, in this exchange my neighbour comes and says: Mr, if you want to bring change, start from yourself.
!!!!!! Waiting for your response. (Thanks for last reply.)

Aditya Nandode said...

Dhirendra,

Here I dont know, what Vikas will say, but my view would be that I improve my own driving(driving schools are there, and even police are ready to teach anyone driving at a meager cost of Rs. 500, the last time I checked.) or get another driver!

Vikas P Goel said...

@thanks Aditya for coming back.
@Dhirendra - Let me give you another analogy - we do criticize when Sachin/Dhoni don't play well, right? Did sachin ever say that we need to to play better than him to criticize, no. But, when it comes to preaching morality , my point is just because some one is in government sector doesn't mean that he is corrupt or just belonging to middle class makes one saint. All I am saying is , wearing "I am Anna" cap doesn't make yo eligible to preach - just look inside. Imagine, a person tweeting in favour of Anna using a pirated Windows !

avin said...

@Vikas

This concept of "let's start with ourselves" is beyond my understanding. The examples of corruption that you have put across are trivial compared to the recent scams. Private individuals like you and me will make rational choices, so I don't have an issue with a guy using pirated Windows tweeting in favour of Anna. But, politicians are supposed to work in public interest; not pursue self interest.

PS - I don't support Anna Hazare. So, I totally agree when you say that " just because some one is in government sector doesn't mean that he is corrupt or just belonging to middle class makes one saint."

Aditya Nandode said...

@avin

Small things, slowly turn big as we grow, as we grow in age ans stature. That is why it is better to start within than point fingers at someone. I support Anna on anti-corruption, but I don't support lokpal, for what difference would 1 more agency make where others have failed, when all started with same promises!

Shiv said...

Many would not disagree on majority of your points, Vikas. However, it can also be argued that;

01.Not doing anything for stopping piracy also amounts to corruption. Enforcing laws/acts is responsibility of public servants/government.

02.Criticising public servant for corruption does not imply that middle class or for that matter any class is saint. Any such inference is just a way of putting forward an argument to prove one's point. Neither Anna Hazare, his team or so called middle class said it.

03.Although parents doing kids' homework is not good, it can also be argued that the situation itself is result of some fault somewhere.

04. There is no denying what Kabeer has to say but we have to start somewhere. So, if some people come forward to start, how can we tell them that you are not qualified enough to dream of eradicating corruption from a system? Going by your post, one can say that things are not in black and white and if that's the case, can we expect someone with spotless reputation to come forward and start doing something?

05.Can't we agree on point that every individual, society, nation should be given chance to correct itself at any point?

I believe, it's a long battle but let's not criticise people by saying that they have no moral authority to initiate a change. We can contribute to their efforts by not being dishonest.......

Vikas P Goel said...

@avin, thanks. examples i gave are the ones which doesn't involve government still can't be trivial. Ask any software or film producer, Piracy is their biggest headache. Imagine the schools which also grade pupils on home assignments- one poor student do the stuff on his own while for other his painter father does- not fair. I am not against Anna or Pro government, am saying we are part of this system.

Vikas P Goel said...

@shivji , thanks for taking time out to read this and also contributing to it. Agree with you, however, no where I am trying to say that only a spotless clean guy has a moral authority to change. Rather, every one should involve in changing the system, but, as you also said let's try and not being dishonest ourselves also.

I repeat - WE ARE THE SYSTEM and SYSTEM IS MADE OF US, ALL OF US.

BK Chowla, said...

We are all corrupt, not out of choice but out of compulsions