Kathmandu, July 20
The Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority caught 200 persons red-handed with the bribe money they received from service-seekers in fiscal 2018-19 compared to 154 in fiscal 2017-18.
It is the highest number of arrests made by the anti-graft body in a year. According to the CIAA, it conducted 142 sting operations in 2018- 19 leading to arrest and prosecution of 200 persons. Of them, 161 were government employees while the others were elected/nominated office-bearers and middlemen. Of the government employees booked by the CIAA on graft charges, 63 were from the administration, 53 from technical field, 33 from Nepal Police and two from community schools.
The arrestees are from office assistants to special class officers.
The CIAA conducted 27 sting operations in the agencies under the Ministry of Home Affairs, 26 under the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration, 22 under the Ministry of Land Management, Cooperatives and Poverty Alleviation, 11 under the Ministry of Forests and Environment, nine under the Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation, eight under the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, seven each under the Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport and the Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, five under the Ministry of Finance, four under the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies, three each under the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development and the Ministry of Health and Population and nine under other ministries and the anti-graft body itself.
Government employees caught in the act of receiving cash in bribe range from junior officer to joint secretary.
Persons involved in bribery were charged under sub-section (1) of section 3 of the Prevention of Corruption Act, in the case of government employees, while others working as their accomplices faced action as per sub-section (2) of section 3 of the same law.
The anti-graft body said one person was arrested with bribe on an average of 2.07 working days during the fiscal 2018-19.
“The CIAA has stepped up sting operation by strengthening its information analysis unit to pursue reform, transparency and good governance in the public service sector of the government,” said a report published by the anti-graft body yesterday.
Increasing involvement of government employees in bribery cases every year indicates that the CIAA should be more vigilant to curb corruption and bribery in the public sector, it stated.
The report also referred to a recent study on the ‘Status of Corruption and Good Governance in Nepal, 2019’ conducted by the CIAA on measures to be taken against corruption in government offices. The study has stressed the need to incorporate the subjects of good governance and anti-corruption into school and university curriculum. If these subjects are included in the curriculum, the country can produce capable and honest human resources in future. It will also help instil a sense of integrity and accountability in citizens.
A version of this article appears in print on July 21, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.