Progressive Bihar - Finally the sleeping giant is waking up

Progressive Bihar - Finally the sleeping giant is waking up
Progressive Bihar - Come support it's growth path.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Is Bihar one of the least corrupt States in India?

Atleast that's what two economists Bibek Debroy and Laveesh Bhandari think. They  have concluded that Bihar is now the least corrupt state in India, in their just released book "Corruption in India" The DNA and the RNA. As per them corruption has taken over India , which most of us will agree with. However they also conclude that Bihar - once that bastion of graft - is now "the least corrupt state" in India.


They attribute this to one simple ingredient - Political Will. This and a lot more is captured in the an article "The Battle for Bihar" published in Foreignpolicy.com  by Sudip Mazumdar. This article looks at the corruption scenario across Bihar. Some of the quotes by people included in the article are
  1. Anti-corruption crusader Anjali Bhardwaj of the National Campaign for People's Right to Information states"  Nitish Kumar has shown that with a clean image and strong political will, one can bring about steady improvement in the life of citizens. He strengthens democracy and stands out among all the other politicians in India."
  2. Pradeep Arya, a prominent businessman who regularly deals with Bihar government agencies states "  "Nitish Kumar, unlike other politicians, does not only talk, but acts on his promises"
  3. Bill Gates endorsed Nitish Kumar's reforms by saying " The great works being done here are lessons for other places in the world"
Sudip has also thrown in some recent statistics about Bihar which are an interesting read:
  1. Bihar boasts the fastest growth rate of India's 28 states
  2. Economy expanding at an astonishing rate of over 14 percent , far ahead of the national average of about 7.5 percent
  3. 66,000 criminals have been convicted in the past 6 years for crimes ranging from murder and kidnapping to stealing public funds. All convicts are barred from getting government contracts.
  4. 20 officials, including a former state police chief, have been caught in cases of having "ill-gotten" properties.
  5. Bihar government built 2400 km of road in 2011, compared to 415 km in 2004.
  6. Bihar administration has opened 15,000 schools
  7. Bihar has filled doctors in 60 - odd government hospitals and over 800 primary health-care centers in rural areas.
  8. Bihar's implementation of Right to Service Act (defining timelines for providing 50 essential services to people)
  9. Bihar's Lokayukta act that gives a five-member ombudsman panel broad powers to investigate and prosecute all government functionaries, including the Chief Minister .
The conclusions by Bibek and Lavish are very thought provoking and its a good sign that corruption in reducing in Bihar. It might be a fact that there is still a lot of corruption in Bihar but we are seeing the wheel turn and atleast 2 economists stand out when they say that Bihar is the least corrupt state in India.  


Prashant
www.progressivebihar.com


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