Corruption occurs as a consequence of bad governance. Corruption would vanish if we improved the rule of law and ensured transparency.
Economic turnaround is still possible if prudent and proven measures are introduced adopting merit-based good governance practices as the current economic turmoil in the country is more due to mismanagement and corruption.
It is imperative that the planners give priority to the economy over all other affairs. There is no harm in taking help from technocrats in a few critical ministries for strengthening the economy, but those at the helm of affairs must ensure that no rules would be bypassed and all appointments are merit based.
The baggage of bad practices accumulated over years would take some time to go. What we are witnessing these days is that living conditions are deteriorating rapidly. The first priority must be to stop the downslide.
If the economy does not deteriorate further it will be a relief for the masses. Improvement would come after some time.
The oft repeated mantra of asking the people to be prepared for further sacrifices must be stopped. General public has suffered so much in the name of reforms that they get nightmares when someone calls for further reforms.
We must now ensure that the past reforms are implemented in true letter and spirit. If the government in the past announced that an electric connection would be approved and installed within a specific time, it should happen on ground as well.
There is no use of lamenting that power is expensive because of corruption.
The power sector must be asked to operate according to the rules and regulations.
If rules say that power connection would be cut if anyone fails to clear the bill after the due date, it should be applied on all users be it a government entity or an influential person.
If the rules say that eliminating power theft is the responsibility of the executive engineer of the area then the concerned official must be removed from the job if theft continues beyond a prescribed percentage.
We can weed out corruption from the power sector by strictly operating it according to the rules and regulations.
Bureaucracy must be tasked to clear all pending decisions within a month even if they have to work 16 hours a day. After that they must not leave the issue pending for more than a day.
Incompetent officials must be shown the door. Postings and transfers must be according to the rules and the minister or prime minister/chief ministers must not have any power to order any posting or transfers.
All postings must have a minimum tenure and the rule must be strictly applied to make officials act responsibly and to judge their performance. You cannot judge the competence of an official if he/she is transferred after a month or two.
The Station House Officer must be fully responsible for maintaining law and order in the area in his/her jurisdiction.
There must not be any political or any other interference in their work.
They must complete the tenure as SHO to ensure they work independently and according to the law. All government officials must be held accountable for any violation of rules.
After two reprimands they should be dismissed. Rule of law is only possible if those that violate it are immediately taken to task.