The advantage of anonymity

Accountability and the menace of unsubstantiated anonymous complaints!

FIDA IQBAL
Srinagar, Publish Date: Aug 13 2018 11:05PM | Updated Date: Aug 13 2018 11:05PM
The advantage of anonymityRepresentational Pic

In corruption and misuses of power different monitoring agencies give our state different rating but almost all are unanimous that we stand among the first few. Corruption is as old as civilization, however, earlier fraud was considered a disgrace but now in the present materialistic world, it has a veiled wide acceptability. Every political dispensation and administrative system from autocratic rulers to existing democratic arrangements made tall claims to curb this menace yet almost all failed to get it down even by few notches. Interestingly, during last more than a decade, concerted efforts were put in by successive governments to curb corruption and instil a duty of accountability and transparency within the administration and the society. Institutions like the State Accountability Commission, the State Information Commission and State Vigilance Commission were established. But the initiative with good intentions made many sections of the society uncomfortable and they started scheming against it from the day one. And they have succeeded to a large extent. This is what the custodians of these institutions also accept openly or in their veiled accounts. These bodies and the authorities will be unable to curb exploitation unless people change their approach and come out openly against dishonesty. And more importantly for that, the moles within the system are to be demolished vigorously.

 

Anyways, whether we are number one or ten in corruption or our anti-graft institutions have been left redundant only time will tell! Surprisingly, at present, a new menace—the unsubstantiated, frivolous and anonymous complaints have made the anti-corruption scenario more complicated. Actually, this practice was started by the corrupt and the embezzlers themselves much earlier just to divert the attention of anti-corruption agencies and thwart the process of accountability. It was the most favoured modus operandi of the corrupt mafia to create confusion and divert attention from their misdeeds. By resorting to such shameful exercise they succeeded to a large extent in their nefarious designs. At present anonymous complaints have become a norm. Every Tom, Dick and Harry having a smallest grudge against anyone resorts to the practice of anonymous complaints and very easily and finely targets his victim. Personal animosity and grudges apart an atmosphere of confusion creeps into the system getting whole anti-graft mechanism off the rails.

 

During the early days of Accountability Commission, many people would address anonymous complaints to the commission either to settle scores or divert the attention of the commission. Some people would definitely send genuine complaints without getting known. By taking cognizance of such complaints and ending nowhere dented the image of the Commission. However, very rightly this process got discouraged when the Commission was restrained to take cognizance of such complaints; thus the precious time of the Commission got saved and many innocent people were saved from embarrassment. Though, this practice has not been stopped at other institutions, departments and authorities. For a complainant, it costs nothing—just a few rupees and some foul ink. While as the system through which it goes for grinding verifications, checks and crosschecks get exposed to an unending muddle putting the supposed accused and the system at risk. A simple act of mischief and hostility loaded with ambiguity expressed in unsubstantiated words activates every anti-graft node fooling the system to act and act swiftly. And at the completion of the process, a page of the paper or two ends nowhere but wasting precious taxpayer’s money and humiliating many without any fault.

 

Definitely, everyone has a right to complain and as aware citizens or victims should complain against all corrupt practices and wrongdoings but for that he should gather courage and come forward openly. Cowards are never mindful people! They throw the dice of ambiguity and anonymity bothering least about the consequences. They are out to fail the system and fulfil their sadistic itch. To stop all this nonsense government should come out with a clear-cut policy and guidelines that no complaint whether true or false should be entertained unless the complainant is known and his or her credentials are established beyond doubt. The provision of filing an affidavit to verify the averments in any statement or for that matter filing an FIR (First Information Report) for taking cognizance of a matter are mandatory in our legal system. Then why should a malicious shred of paper be taken as a testament against anybody? This is ridiculous! And only encourages the mischievous and the scheming people who at one or the other point are part of the exploiting lot of corrupt and the embezzlers.

 

 

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