The government has devised a novel way of dealing with bureaucrats and politicians caught with their hands in the till. They will not have to sit around in sackcloth and ashes waiting for judgement day. Instead, they can whoop it up with their ill-gotten riches till charges are pressed. By any accounts, this is a steal. It gives the offender time to enjoy the fruits of his labour without being belaboured by the law.
Now this opens up many possibilities for the offender. If what he has nicked is in cash, it could disappear into an account in the Cayman Islands. Or he could spend his days in comfort at that Swiss chalet bought in his uncle’s name. And come the day of reckoning, all the authorities will have is ‘the case of the missing evidence’.
With the conviction rate for tainted babus at less than 30 per cent, why, this could become a lucrative career in itself. But what if it were little old you or me trying a deft flutter on the side? Will the law say, press on regardless until you hear from us? We think not. The morale of the story — selfless service to the nation begins with self-service.