Corruption vs Economic Growth
“Corruption free government is not a necessary condition for rapid economic development. If the corporate and institutions work and uncertainty is checked, progress is possible.”
Corruption in any form is considered as an incurable disease, a reason of many social and economical evils in the society and it damages the moral and ethical fibres of the civilization. Indisputably, it is apt that corruption breads many evils in the society and once corruption starts occurring, slowly and gradually whole country passes through its net and it becomes after sometime an incurable disease. From the point of view of economic growth, there seems to be no clear cut correlation between corruption and the economic growth of a country. There may be presence of some social maladies like inequality of income among the people, moral degradation of people due to the prevalence of corruption, but the parameters of economic growth which are taken on percentage or an average basis are totally different.
Corruption in public administration is something not peculiar to India. It is available in almost all the countries, and India is by no means the worst in this respect. Corruption needs only two prerequisites-First, there must be a predisposition on the part of an individual to accept gratification, and second, he must have some discretionary power to affect some sections-of the public. When both these factors combine, corruption most prevail. No wonder that the independent India is a fertile ground for corruption.
But corruption in long run may destroy the whole society morally, ethically and economically. May be in the long run, a country requires clean government to reach the top of the income ladder, may be rapid income growth by itself induces better accountability and governance, may be corruption in long run degenerates the society into various misfortunes and evils. But one fact still stands out : Clean government is not a compulsory condition for rapid economic growth.
The main causes for the steady growth of corruption in India is the advent of get rich quick professional politicians on the scene. They make hay while the sun shines as also encourage corruption among the officials to suit their own ends. The only remedy, therefore, lies in separating the function of the politicians and the officials. The work of the politicians should be confined to laying down policies and they should not have anything to do with routine day to day administration, except to see that the policies laid down are effective. It is also important that eminent men of standing with a spirit of dedications should come forward to replace the professional politicians so as to make for a cleaner administration. There is also need for the Government to give up its penchant for controls. In certain circumstances, controls on the distribution of food grains and other essential commodities in short supply arc compulsory but their continuance long after they have outlived their usefulness simply perpetuates corruption. It results in harassment to the public, which is the breeding ground of corruption.
So far Indian Economy is concerned the slow progress is the result of lack of decision making at higher levels. Many politicians who takes money but could not enforce their will because of powerful lobby of bureaucrats at many places and in a democracy like India, voice of media, voice of opposition could suppress the wish of the leader. Ours is a peculiar democracy where politicians are corrupt but not authoritative, ours is a multi-party system where leg pulling for no reason, accusation without any evidence is common. Instability in political system is also responsible for the slow economic progress where the Prime Minister is always busy in satiating the coalition partners to keep attached. So far qualities of institutions are concerned we are having well matures corporate and the fast development reflected during the last years, has brought stability in the country and good relations with the neighbouring nations. India’s economic growth on an average 6% GDP despite considerable corruption is because of the stability and the liberation measures taken by the present government, gradual privatization of various sectors, reducing bureaucratic intervention in routine work and other measures adopted by the government. It is necessary to note that growth in some states, where institutions are strong and decision making is least arbitrary is faster than other states.
In brief, it can well be inferred that corruption and economic growth has no clear correlation strong institutions, political stability, fast and reasonability in decision taking are some of the requirements for fast economic growth.