The country’s richest municipality has topped a list of corrupt government offices — for the second year running.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) earned the dubious honour even as the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) kicked off its week-long Vigilance Awareness Week on Tuesday.
The Mumbai Police came in second, also for the second year in a row, while the Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority (MHADA) and other public offices followed.
The corruption index is based on the number of officials trapped by the ACB while accepting a bribe. With 17 of its officials in the list, the BMC tops the list, while the Mumbai Police had 15 of its staff caught in that period.
Corporators occupied third place, with five having been arrested for accepting a bribe. MHADA’s is in fourth place, chief among its arrested officials being the Repair Board’s joint chief officer Vijay Kalam-Patil in September this year. With three of its officers getting trapped this year, the rationing office is in fifth place in the list of 70 corrupt officials.
To mark the launch of its Vigilance Awareness Week, ACB Director General A N Roy addressed a group of over 70 vigilance officers from various government departments across the state at the Police Mess at Worli.
Deputy Inspector General, ACB, Niket Kaushik told HT that a series of activities are scheduled during the week. All 10 regional units of the ACB in Mumbai will organise interactive sessions with NGOs and citizens groups like Mohalla Committees to spread awareness about corruption and the means to curb it.
“Don’t be a mute spectator to corruption. A little effort by citizens can help contain the problem to a great extent,” Kaushik said. For the first time this year, ACB officials held sessions on corruption for the 1,200 newly recruited constables of the city police at the Marol police training school.
The ACB has printed pamphlets listing information (including e-mail addresses and phone numbers) that citizens can use to tip them off about corrupt officials. To spread awareness about Vigilance Week, hoardings and banners have been put up outside major railway stations and at major road junctions.
Television channels will flash slogans and appeals, and cinema halls in the city have already signed up. Seven major phone service providers have been urged to send text messages with ACB-related information during the week.