Two wings of vigilance are in force in our administrative structure. One is the State Vigilance Commission and its branch run as Departmental Vigilance Officers. While the former wing takes care of overall vigilance issues the latter is mandated to look after the departmental affairs with the objective of scuttling chances of corruption on departmental level. Both work in sync with each other.
The State Vigilance Commission has submitted its 4th Annual Report. The report is the summation of the performance of the Commission itself as well as of the Departmental Vigilance Officers. An overall view of the report is not really very encouraging taking into account the number of complaints/enquiries received and disposed of.
This is a department-wise complaint/enquiry report. For want of space we cannot give full details of the pending complaints and inquiries with different departments but just one or two examples would show how poor is the performance of the DVOs. It is revealed that the highest number of 2,163 cases are pending for disposal with the Departmental Vigilance Officers (DVOs) of Revenue and Relief Departments out of a total number of 8935 enquiries pending with the DVOs of different Government departments. While the Revenue Department has the highest number meaning 2,163, the CAPD has the smallest number of 163 inquiries. We have also before us the details of the complaints/inquiries resolved so far by each concerned department and we find that not more than 20 per cent of them have been addressed. The report further said that statements of enquiries and complaints referred to various departments from time to time by the State Vigilance Organization presented a dismal picture as hardly any complaint was found disposed of by any department.
There is hardly anything in the report of the SVC that may be called encouraging. The report laments that the departments are not responding to the need of scrutinizing and bringing to book the cases in which complaints are found genuine. It is regrettable that the departments are trying to shield the corrupt and imbecile functionaries instead of exposing them and supporting the effort of the DVOs in eradicating corruption.
It shows that the State Vigilance Commission has the priority of dealing first with the departments and then to other institutions and organizations. This is a very sad commentary on the performance of the departments. Actually, plugging of corruption should begin with the departments before it reaches the public domain, and if the SVC is entangled in resolving the complaints and inquiries pertaining to the departments only, then it cannot perform the function mandated to it. It is the job of the administration or the General Administration Department, to be precise, to try a mechanism that will reduce huge pendency of complaints with the DVOs. Unless the departmental senior functionaries are seriously handling the vigilance related cases, success in breaking the impasse may not be possible. The departments are supposed to give teeth to the job of the DVOs and the SVO itself. Unfortunately, there are reports that some departmental seniors are trying to shield the offenders in their departments against whom cases have been registered for further enquiry. This is unacceptable. Those who support allegedly corrupt functionaries will be inflicting the blemish on their own fair name by lending indirect support to the tainted persons. They must understand administrative and legal consequence of their unbecoming behaviour and breach of discipline.