Lokpal is a good beginning, but more needs to be done

After eight unsuccessful attempts in the last five decades, the Lokpal Bill finally saw light of day on December 18. However, it is important to understand that the Bill, although a good beginning, is not a magic wand that will banish corruption overnight. To be effective, it must be part of a series of parallel actions, so that we have an effective architecture against corruption.

What should that architecture look like? It must include, in the first instance, four other steps: One, reform of funding and financial accountability of political parties. Two, a systematic increase in the neutral intervention of technology into as many areas as possible where the common man has to deal with government. Three, finalisation of a model legal framework ensuring transparency and fair play in all transactions relating to the disposal and acquisition of national resources and government procurement processes. Four, instituting deterrent action in a timebound and exemplary manner for all acts of corruption, which, in turn, presupposes substantive judicial reforms.