By Ankit Varma:
Politics and abuse of power. No matter how incompatible these are in their true sense; an uneasy collusion has always existed between them. Indian politics is no stranger to corruption and misuse of power. But making a sweeping generalization is unfair, there still exist some ministers and parliamentarians who have managed have upheld the dignity of the position and kept a clean image.
Dr. Singh is the current Prime Minister of India and commands great respect in the political fraternity and among the people. A former governor of the RBI (Reserve Bank of India) and the deputy chairman of the Planning Commission, he is arguably one of the most efficient Finance Ministers of India and is credited with the economic reforms of 1992 which were responsible of high growth rate and alleviation of millions of people out of poverty.
Dr. Singh is one of the longest serving PM of the country. His second term as the Prime Minister was marred by corruption charges against his cabinet ministers. Although there were no direct allegations against him, he was accused of shielding the corrupt and acting under the pressure of coalition politics. Dr. Singh’s leadership has also suffered some serious questioning because of his failure to build consensus on issues and his silence on matters of governance.
Member of the Rajya Sabha and the Defense Minister of the country, Mr. Antony has not faced any allegation of corruption. A taint free stint at the Ministry of Defense is particularly commendable as almost all predecessors faced allegations of corruption. Although he is accused for dragging his feet on big ticket reforms, the ministry under his leadership has black listed many companies who tried to win contracts through unfair means.
Jairam Ramesh is a noted economist and an influential politician. He is an alumnus of prestigious institutions including IIT-Bombay, Carnegie Mellon University and MIT. Mr. Ramesh is currently in charge of Ministry of Rural Development with additional charge of Ministry drinking water and sanitation.
Jairam Ramesh has an impeccable track record as a public representative. He was applauded by many for his decision making as the Minister of Environment and Forests. During his tenure Minister of Environment and Forests successfully shrugged off its tag of ‘A Rubber Stamp Ministry’ and made some very crucial decisions. These decisions did not win him much support from the corporate world and he was often termed as anti-industry.
A veteran politician and former chief minister, he is currently the Minister of New and Renewable energy. Dr. Abdullah is known for his strong pro-India stand. Dr. Abdullah has served as Chief Minister of Kashmir on several occasions including the years of rampant terrorism. He came under heavy criticism for his out-spoken comments on vote bank politics and anti-separatist sentiments but most importantly Dr. Abdullah has never had a case of corruption or allegations of misuse of his position against him.
Sachin Pilot is the son of late INC veteran Dr. Rajesh Pilot and youngest Member of Parliament. He has constantly been projected as the youth leader of the INC and is presently the Minister of State at the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology. He is considered as a man of impeccable integrity and has never faced any charges of corruption.
So these are some names that managed to steer clear of corruption as well as criminal charges. We can hope that the others would take their example and emulate them.