'Mumbaikars feel following up is a waste of time'

Though Mumbai ranked below tier II and III cities on ACB's 'most corrupt list', officials say lack of enthusiasm in pursuing complaints is the primary reason

As per data available on the Anti-Corruption Bureau's (ACB) website, Mumbai has maintained its eighth spot on the list — from last year — of the most corrupt cities across Maharashtra.

An ACB official, requesting anonymity, claimed the reason behind the country's financial hub ranking lower than tier II and III cities is because people here don't lodge complaints, as they feel following up is a waste of time.

The officer said, “Primary reason why people don't lodge complaints in a city like Mumbai is because they are always in a hurry. They prefer paying to get their work done rather than doing it themselves.

But in smaller cities like Amravati or Nanded, people have time to follow-up. If an official is demanding money, they are ready to approach the ACB and ensure that the accused is arrested.”

Pune topped the list of corrupt cities in 2015 (till Dec 20) with 214 trappings, followed by Nashik with 185 cases. Even Tier II and III cities like Aurangabad, Nagpur, Thane and Amravati, were ahead of Mumbai.

Revenue dept on top
With around 296 cases, Eknath Khadse-led Revenue department topped the list of the most corrupt offices, followed by Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis' Home department with 267 trappings. Sources claimed getting work done in Revenue and Police departments without offering bribes was next to impossible.

These departments were followed by panchyat samitis, municipal corporations, zilla parishads, Maharashtra Vidyut Vitaran Company (State Electricity Board) and education.

ACB hits a low
For the first time since 2010, ACB's chart of the 'trapped' has dipped. While in 2013 the ACB registered 583 cases, the number rose drastically after Director General of Police Pravin Dixit took charge. By the end of 2014, the ACB set a new record for itself by registering 1,245 cases. This year, however, the number dropped to 1,194 cases.

Sources said the dip in performance was the direct outcome of the change in hierarchy and time-consuming cases involving political heavyweights such as NCP's Chhagan Bhujbal and Ajit Pawar.

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