Some juicy tales of corruption
Corruption no more makes news. They make interesting tales. Enjoy them. In debates condemn them.
The latest juicy tale that I heard was in Mumbai from a parent who had gone to an engineering college to get his ward admitted.The burly guy handling the entrance door curtly told the middle-aged executive to leave behind his cell phone. Why? Is there is a security risk? the parent asked. The guy frowned. His child’s future being more important than self-respect, the poor father had to give in. He then went inside the room where sat a smiling principal.
Some relief, he thought. Talks too started on the right note with the principal himself showing concern over the faulty admission system. Nothing went wrong till his eyes fell on the calculator in the principal’s hand. While discussing corruption in the admission system, the principal slowly turned it towards him. A figure flashed on it. Some eye talk.
Discussion ended with, “Please complete the formalities and come back to us.”
Calculators are handy, so are the cell phone numbers that are often used for illegal or heavy transactions. I remember my meeting with a diamond merchant of Surat.
“We can’t depend on banks, they will take days to count crores that we may urgently need during our business trips. So we have developed our very own ATM’s. We have a coded language– “do taka, teen taka, char peti.”
Our man goes to the contact with the cell phone. The man on the other end dials the number, a brief hello and the moneybags are handed over. Transaction is over in less than ten minutes.
Some interesting tales heard during various regimes in the Hindi heartland -most of them are straight from the horse’s mouth. Sometimes the modus operandi has changed, even the bags in which money is carried. A few years back, money was carried in the official files (the ones with green leather covers) and brown leather bags, used for carrying official files. Such popular they were at one point of time that people could count the bags and the money in it (the files and the bags could accommodate a definite number of Rs 500 bundles)
1. Transfer has always been a flourishing industry in the Northern states. A colleague once decided to accompany an engineer to the minister’s house to see for himself the ‘age-old’ practice. They went through gates after gates. The last gate had a small window from where they were first identified by none other than the minister. They entered the strong room after his nod. Two men sat there- the minister and the party functionary. Besides them, there were just pile of notes all around. Deal was struck. Money paid. Transfer order issued. The operation was swift.
2.A bureaucrat’s wife loves “sweets”. Nothing wrong with that. But she is not gracious enough to accept the sweets in her hands. Instead she directs the guest to keep it in the fridge. It’s only after some time that she will open the box, count the goodies (notes), call up her husband, inform sweets have been delivered. The file gets cleared instantly.
3. It’s all very scientific. Allotment of a prime land also comes with a heavy price. The procedure is simple. After receiving a preliminary allotment letter from the authority concerned, one goes to the “right connection,” pays the right amount; usually the cost of the land, gets a secret code with which he again goes to the right connection. Once they give their nod, the final allotment letter is delivered.
4. There is honesty in these corrupt deals also. A politician has hired three CA’s to maintain proper “bahi khatas.” A person who paid 14 crores got a shock of his life when he was told to fill in the shortfall of Rs 35,000 and change soiled notes worth Rs 10,000. Who said money is weighed and not counted today?
Such tales are endless. Share if you have one. We all know they are not baseless. But in the court of law they are rarely proven. It’s just that either the corrupt are getting smarter or our agencies are getting corrupted by the day? Have your say.