Remarkable Efficiency in the Corruption System?

The whole Indian system is bloody inefficient- Says who?”, thundered my pal; Mr. Professional (MP) recently when I was cribbing about inefficiency being the principal ingredient of the Indian DNA.

“Have you ever tried registering your property (site/house)? Then you would have inevitably come across the remarkably efficient bribe system. Everything is fixed. The bribe you pay (over and above the registration charges of course) is either a fixed percentage of your property value; or follows slab-rates depending on the property value. It doesn't end there. Each person's share of this pie is clearly defined beforehand, all the way up to the minister; no less. And have you ever stopped to marvel at the process of bribe collection and distribution?”

I definitely saw sense in what MP was saying. I pointed him to this excellent article by Atanu Dey which explains how trucks are routinely overloaded in exchange for a bribe. I was astounded at the way it works – and how seamless the entire process seams to be. Everyone stands to gain – the lorry operator, the corrupt officials at the check-point, the road construction contractor, and not to mention the babus and netas.

That only charged up MP all the more. He now focused his energies on bashing the LPG cylinder delivery chain. “Do you have any idea why you have to wait for 10 days to even 2 weeks for delivery of you LPG cylinder from the day you book it? It's because the dealers are stocking it up and providing it in black. The process is so streamlined, you won't even suspect something's cooking. You'll even dismiss the delay as yet another manifestation of the Great Indian Inefficiency Syndrome!”

Well, well, well. MP's right this time. The various processes and systems which corruption has spawned should be taught as subjects at the various B-Schools. They're probably six-sigma or better. If only this skill had been put to proper use. And here we are, the educated middle class, who's blissfully putting it all down to inefficiency. Ha!

5 comments to Remarkable Efficiency in the Corruption System?

  • It is a remarkable post on remarkable corrupt system.
    Kiran,we, the people of India,have by and large accepted corruption a way of life.Why mention a case like Property registration?It is alleged that there is corruption in giving away contracts for cleaning gutters---corruption in fixing street lights----corruption in getting birth certificate-----corruption in getting a death certificate----corruption in purchase of truck tyres for state transport.Is there any department which is free of corruption?None.
    One can write thesis on Indian corruption.

  • Pretty much so. Well put.

    I had wondering how things seemed to be going so smoothly - no going round in circles.

    Now I know the reason :D

  • Anonymous

    Well I do not buy that completey,that the whole system is corrupt. I was able to get my Voters ID Card in a matter of days and with no hassle from the BBMP office.Point I am trying to make is though we go hammers and tongs the moment we are cheated on our sincere effort of making it through the govt often do we pin-up success stories where we have actually been treated well and given the due attention w/o the usual undertable acts..

  • @BK Chowla: Sir, I had initially intended to touch upon some 7-8 departmets .. but then it's all the same story. Why waste time repeating the same thing again and again! You are right in saying that we have accepted corruption as a way of life. And this mentality needs to change urgently!

    @Mainak: You bet! Even I had no inkling of what was going on in these LPG cylinder delivery circles until I recently came to know the "inside story"!

    @Anonymous: Agree with your point about Voters ID card process being unbelievably efficient and smooth. But, I wonder whether there was much money involved there (as opposed to other cases I have mentioned in my post; and BK Chowlaji mentioned in the comment above). Would the absence of any carrot at the end of the stick have anything to do with the success of the voter ID process? Or would it have to do with the massive awareness ( et. al)?

  • Incognito

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