The technological developments, while giving opportunities to prevent corruption, have also made it difficult to trace it, particularly in areas like cryptocurrency, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, PK Mishra, said on Friday.
Delivering the keynote address at the International Anti-Corruption Day-2022 organised by the CBI on ‘Anti-Corruption efforts – A sine qua non for Development and Security,’ Mishra said the impact of corruption is especially heavy on common citizens, and even more on poorer and vulnerable persons in communities.
Mishra said corruption encourages dysfunctionality in government and perpetrates economic inefficiency and can be a serious threat to national security.
The top bureaucrat said that since liberalisation in India, the nature of corruption has become more complex.
With technological development, there are opportunities to prevent corruption but also areas where corruption can be much more difficult to trace, particularly in areas like cryptocurrency, he said in his address.
Mishra said that corruption, whether small or big, undermines the rights of someone or the other, he said, as he underlined the need for all countries to move together in fighting corruption.
Emphasising the importance of innovative anti-corruption solutions, Mishra stressed on the need for real-time information sharing between law enforcement agencies.
He said India is ready to play an active role towards fighting various types of crimes with cross-border linkages including financial crimes.
He also said India is ready to cooperate with other countries and agencies.
The Principal Secretary said that since 2014, the country has decided to make a major change and move in a new direction, and the government expeditiously put in place significant legal provisions to support the policy of “zero tolerance” against corruption.
He said the government has constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) on black money, besides enacting a comprehensive and more stringent new law the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, 2015.
There’s also a Benami Transactions (Prohibition) Amendment Act 2016, which empowers the authorities to attach and confiscate benami properties.
He said law enforcement agencies such as CBI have done a great deal in their endeavour to reduce corruption.
Mishra gave Police Medal for meritorious service to 34 officers of the CBI on the occasion.
Earlier in his address, CBI Director Subodh Kumar Jaiswal said that at the recently organised Interpol General Assembly, all 195 Interpol member countries had resolved to “actively and collectively” support the fight against organised crime, financial crime, and corruption.
The 2022 International Anti-Corruption Day also marks the beginning of the twentieth anniversary of the UN Convention Against Corruption – UNCAC.
This is reflected by the theme of this year’s international day, ‘UNCAC at 20: Uniting the World Against Corruption.’
The event was also attended by the CVC, vigilance commissioners, Member Lokpal, Chairman, UPSC, several senior police officers including DGs of CPOs and law enforcement agencies, and International Police Liaison officers from various embassies, a statement from the CBI said.
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