Public officials in India may be cornering as much as Rs.92,122 crore ($18.42 billion), or 1.26 percent of the GDP, through corruption, says a new book by two economic experts.
Bibek Debroy and Laveesh Bhandari estimate on the strength of Central Statistical Organisation (CSO) figures that most bribery is accrued from the transport industry, real estate and "other public services".
Pegging the figure of bribery from "other public services" at Rs.14,594 crore ($2.92 billion), the authors say this is mainly accounted for by leakages from official welfare programmes.
Real estate and related business services involving registration of property and stamp duties account for Rs.12,534 crore ($2.5 billion) in corruption, says their book "Corruption in India: The DNA and RNA" (Konark Publishers).
Bribery at multiple checkpoints and by revenue officials, police and customs in the transport sector generate Rs.11,267 crore ($2.25 billion) in corruption, the authors say.
The book estimates bribery amount from illegal mining, theft from public mines and licensing at Rs.9,578 crore ($1.91 billion).
This is followed by corruption in government procurement (Rs.9,144 crore or $1.82 billion). Bribe taking by inspectors, police and local bodies in unregistered manufacturing totals Rs.6,600 crore ($1.32 billion).
Other sectors which enrich corrupt public servants are agriculture, forestry and logging, fishing, registered manufacturing, electricity, gas and water supply, construction, trade, hotels and restaurants, railways, storage, communication, and banking and insurance.
Debroy is a professor with Delhi's Centre for Policy Research. Bhandari heads Indicus Analytics, monitoring the performance of the Indian economy.