Despite a Grim Picture, Corruption has Reduced, Says Study

As per the people’s perception, over half of the respondents say that demonetization catalyzed decreased level of corruption between November-December, while 12 percent feels corruption has increased.

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Despite a Grim Picture, Corruption has Reduced, Says Study

This year (2017) has seen fewer bribes to the tune of 67 percent paid by Indian households, as per the 2017 CMS-India Corruption Study (CMS-ICS). This report further suggests that Rs 6,350 crores of bribe has been paid 2017 in the 10 public services examined in the study compared to Rs 20,500 crores in 2005.

CMS’ survey takes into account peoples’ Perception (P) and Experience (E) from 150 households in each of the 20 states considered for this research for the previous one year.

As per the people’s perception, over half of the respondents say that demonetization catalyzed decreased level of corruption between November-December, while 12 percent feels corruption has increased. Around 21 percent feel that there has been no change in the corruption level and 11 percent did not hold any opinion.

However, the perception about corruption differs amongst the different public services. The highest levels of perceived corruption are in Police service with 32 percent, public distribution services (PDS) at 29 percent, Electricity at 27 percent and Judicial services at 26 percent.

The declining trend of corruption in 2017 is perceived by the majority of the participants in the study.  The public perception points towards a declining trend of corruption in last 10 to 12 years. However, services like land records/housing, judicial services, police, and housing have shown significant rise in corruption, according the public perception.

The key reasons to pay bribe falls into categories of dependency on a service provider, payment evasion, documentation related, and procedural related. These reasons have remained identical in the time period 2005-2007.

In 2017, the substantial proportion of households (76 percent) paid bribe in rebating taxes. The amount paid by the households, on average, is Rs 3,816 last year.

More than 71 percent of the households have paid bribe in taking loan under the banking services that was characterized with a maximum 75 percent interaction with the households. The mean amount paid by them has been around Rs 1,000 in a year.

According to CMS, there is high dependency on the public services. Therefore, the level of interaction between the public services and the households is considered in this research and listed them for the study.