Rahul visit for petty gain
To be fair enough, it does not suit a great leader of a grand national party to use his visit to an ailing person to “feed political opportunism”. Yes, I am talking about Congress President Rahul Gandhi who recently visited ailing Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, who had been undergoing treatment for a pancreatic ailment, on the pretext of enquiring about his health but later he sued it for “petty political gains”. Of course, Rafale deal is a matter of concern for the entire nation but to cross all the limits even not to leave the ailing to drag him into the matter is not good for any leader. So, Rahul Gandhi should equip with a healthy political tradition if he really wants to appear as a “great leader” in 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
The logic of postal-orders in denominations of Rs 10 and Rs 20
It was only after revelation through RTI application that Department of Posts discontinued postal-orders in outdated denominations like rupees 1, 2, 5 and 7 because of extremely low sale-figure and high handling cost. According to an RTI response, handling cost of a postal-order was Rs 37.45 to Department of Posts alone in the year 2011-12. Handling cost for clearing-operation of banks is even extra. It is highly illogical that public-exchequer may bear such extraordinary loss in handling postal-orders in denominations like Rs 10 and Rs 20. Rather it is time that higher denominations like of Rs 100, 200 and 500 may be added to avoid the purchase of demand-drafts in submitting various types of fees.
Government-fees below Rs 50 may either be increased or totally abolished or the Department of Posts may issue special stamps like there used to be for licenses of radio and TV sets for services requiring heavy use of postal-orders in lower denominations of Rs 10 and 20. The beginning can be done with introducing RTI stamps where presently heavy use of postal-orders in denominations Rs 10 is there. RTI stamps can be issued in denominations of Rs 2, 10 and 50. Presently copying-charges under RTI Act in amounts lower than Rs 10 is not feasible because of discontinuance of postal-orders in denominations of Rs 2. Even Central Information Commission CIC in its repeated verdicts has recommended issue of RTI stamps. CIC has also taken up the issue of RTI stamps with Department of Post administratively.
Poor Honesty Ranking of India
It refers to recent 2018 report of Transparency International placing India at poor 78th place out of total 180 countries for Corruption-Perception-Index with a score of 41, a slight improvement on last year score of 40 ranking 81st. No improvement is noted in terms of corruption even after the change in regime in India in the year 2014 when India is placed in routine around the 80th place even after tough steps like demonetisation. The goal of the Indian government should be to touch ranking of honest countries like Denmark and New Zealand with a score of 88 and 87 respectively with New Zealand once even getting 95 points in earlier some year.
Our political rulers and bureaucrats are fond of enjoying luxurious study tours on public expense in the national or public interest. Study team should be sent to the least corrupt nations to study ways to minimise corruption. A high-powered autonomous Commission should be formed to suggest ways to make India compete with most honest countries of the world, with an authority to implement at its own without needing any direction from the government. This is not impossible because corruption level went sharply down in emergency-era of 1975-76 because of fear psychology developed in minds the of corrupt ones at that time.
Indian government should follow ideals of the former President late Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam who considered gifts and tips as a polished form of bribe. Rather than banning tips, Indian government encouraged by suggesting voluntary tipping rather than restaurants imposing unethical service charge in their bills. Festival gifts used as polished bribes should be altogether banned with only specified relations permitted to present gifts in family functions. Maximum profit-percentage should be fixed between ex-factory price and Maximum Retail Price to reduce bribe index. Strict-most steps to curb currency circulation should be taken including imposing monthly withdrawal from banks by individuals.
Subhash Chandra Agrawal