Finally, the sun has risen and the Central government has decided to execute its two-year-long pending provision which if implemented will become an Albtross around bureaucrats’ neck. They will, like their contemporaries in Bihar and Madhya Pradesh, be required to declare their assets and properties. At a juncture, when new scams and corruptions seem to have become nation’s staple diet, such an initiative from the government is like a boon as nothing could have been better than this. Here, it should be noted that the implementation of this provision should not take much time and effort. But then, when we go a bit down the memory lane, we see that this isn’t the first time the government has considered the proposal for uncovering bureaucratic assets. The idea, which was proposed two years back, required bureaucrats to put details of their moveable and immoveable property on a government website. Two years and more, proposal still requires implementation. Usually, it is seen that such proposals get delayed only when the administrative machinery lack the will power to carry out implementation. But then, in this case, the obstacles are created by the bureaucrats themselves willingly. It is not strange that many bureaucrats are opposing this assets declaration provision making an excuse of breach in privacy. They must be having their own reasoning behind the opposition. But, whatever be the reason, the government in no way is compelled to pay heed to it. After all, if bureaucrats of Bihar and Madhya Pradesh can make their assets public, why can’t the bureaucrats posted in the Central government do the same? The truth is that, the Central government should make compelling provisions for the bureaucrats of states as well as the Centre to declare their assets. Now, whether the government can compel them or not is to be seen?

It is true that this move by the government is being seen as a cleansing drive against corruption, but it should not be considered that only this measure would purge the nation of the rampant corruption. The fact is that, declaration of assets by the bureaucrats will surely help to curb corruption because it is known by all that acquiring ‘benami’ properties has become a trend in the bureaucratic circle. Recently, the arrest of NALCO CMD on charges of bribery revealed that he was operating a ‘benami’ locker from where lakhs of cash and gold bricks worth crores of rupees was recovered. Therefore, it is evident the government has to resort to strong ways to check corruption. At a time when the country is struggling with corruption at every level of society, it is not at all satisfactory to know that the Central government is still mulling to implement measures for controlling corruption. This signifies lack of will-power on part of the Central government which instead of implementing ways to curb corruption from the root, it is just cooling off its heel on such provisions. If the ruling government is really concerned about putting a full stop to corruption then why has it let the Second Administrative Reforms Committee report to rot in files? What is the reason that it took seven long years for the UPA II government to realise that the present ways adopted by it to tackle corruption are not enough? It is high time for the Central government to comprehend that there is no balance between its words and deeds. The result of this imbalance is that the common men’s trust and hope is on the decline while disappointment on the rise.