Only 91 cases of corruption were registered in Mumbai in 2014, the lowest in Maharashtra. The Pune range, on the other hand, saw as many as 226 cases being registered in the same period, while the Nashik range saw 216.
But all is not as rosy as it seems. Experts said the lower number of cases was not because of a decrease in corruption in Mumbai. While Mumbai had a reasonable number of complaints, Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) officers said, a large number of complainants chose against cooperating with them to trap the corrupt officials.
Secondly, Mumbai covered a smaller geographical area compared to other ranges in the state.
ACB’s Pune range includes the district of Sangli, Satara, Kolhapur and Solapur in addition to Pune, while Nashik covers Dhule, Ahmednagar, Jalgaon and Nandurbar districts.
“When a complainant approaches us with a specific case, we inform them of the procedure to trap the corrupt official red-handed. This usually necessitates the participation of the complainant to carry out the trap and the arrest. But sometimes, when we explain the trap procedure, there are complainants who refrain from participating in the trap,” said a senior ACB officer, on anonymity.
Praveen Dixit, director general of police (ACB), said, “It will not be fair to compare Mumbai with other regions of Maharashtra. Other ranges are vast and have many more districts, which consist of both urban and rural population.”
While the Pune range registered 226 cases, the highest in the state, Nagpur registered 164 cases of corruption including traps, disproportionate assets and criminal misconduct in 2014. Amravati saw 142 cases of corruption, the same as Aurangabad, while Nanded saw 139 cases of graft.
Of the 91 cases registered in Mumbai, 81 cases were traps. In comparison, 213 of Pune’s 226 cases were traps.