Lokpal is but only a part of answer: Yechury

Sitaram Yechury lashed out at the process of economic reforms in India, which he said had resulted in a state of "crony capitalism"

Washington: CPI (M) leader Sitaram Yechury has said that Anna Hazare`s movement against corruption might have evoked a mass appeal, but a Lokpal Bill was not the single answer to the bane of corruption in India.

Speaking on the issue of `Corruption and Governance in India` organised by the Stanford Center for International Development, Yechury said while his party had always stood for bringing in the Lokpal Bill, a more "holistic" approach was needed to fight corruption.

He said ending corporate funding to parties was a part of the solution, so was the need to address corruption in judiciary.

Yechury lashed out at the process of economic reforms in India, which he said had resulted in a state of "crony capitalism" and the evolution of corruption into different forms.

"The most important effect of corruption today was that it was denying citizens their rightful due," Yechury said, citing the huge losses in the 2G spectrum scam, money that could have been used to subsidise food or education.

Highly critical of the type of economic liberalisation being ushered in India, he said it had led to "crony capitalism" and creation of two different Indias - "one the
Global Shining India and the other - the deprived India (which) people do not speak of much".

On Anna Hazare and his anti-corruption campaign, Yechury said renunciation had a great mass appeal in India but "Lokpal would not be the single answer to the bane of corruption".

"A holistic approach would be needed," he said, adding that Lokpal would be a part of it.

Yechury also stressed on the need for eliminating the use of money power in election and addressing the pressing issue of judicial corruption.

He said the involvement of corporates in donations to parties needs to be made illegal.

Referring to what he called the changing nature of corruption in a liberalised India, he said while the old forms of corruption like in acquiring licenses had waned, new forms in acquiring mining leases had gone up exponentially.

He also lamented the fact that money power that such corruption had created was distorting elections.

Disagreeing with the contention that the reform process has to be depoliticised, he said only accountability to Parliament will lead to a debate about whether the reforms were in right direction.

However, the Parliament too had failed to meet regularly and deliver its responsibility, he lamented, pointing out how three years back the parliament had met for only 46 days in a year.

To a question on whether the CPI-M would be relevant in 15 years time, Yechury remarked that as long as what the CPI-M has to say is relevant the CPI-M will remain relevant.


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