Washington: Indians continue to see corruption as widespread in their country`s government and business, but are less likely to feel that way this year, according to a new Gallup poll.
This may reflect rising optimism about the government and citizen`s efforts to fight the country`s corruption problems, the Gallup organisation, noted for its opinion polls, said while releasing the survey Tuesday.
In early 2012, some 73 percent Indians surveyed said corruption was pervasive in their government and 67 percent said it is widespread in business, the survey noted.
Perceptions of widespread corruption within the business community are particularly high among current business owners (72 percent) and those who plan to start a business within the next 12 months (80 percent).
This likely puts a serious roadblock in the path of investment and business development, Gallup said.
Although Indians are less likely this year to see corruption as widespread in their government, their confidence in the country`s leadership remains lower than it was a few years ago, it said.
Sixty percent currently say they are confident of their national government, down from 70 percent in 2009.
Residents likely became more frustrated when government ministers spent valuable legislative time addressing political scandals instead of the country`s deteriorating economic conditions, it said.
The beginning of 2012 shows signs of what could be the start of a positive turnaround in Indians` perceptions of corruption. If the trend continues, it may signal a more favorable business climate for investment and economic growth, Gallup said.
Further, a substantial boost in the economy and living standards - particularly for the nearly one in three Indians who rate their lives poorly enough to be considered "suffering" - may help raise Indians` confidence in their government, it said.
The survey results are based on face-to-face interviews with 5,000 ¬people aged 15 and older conducted Jan 29-March 8 in India.
Gallup attributed Indians changing feeling about corruption to among other things, arrest of A. Raja, who stepped down as telecommunications minister in the wake of the 2G scam, the Supreme Court revoking the illegally awarded telecom licenses and social activist Anna Hazare`s crusade for anti-corruption legislation.