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Sunday, 13 November 2011

End govt's discretionary powers to curb corruption: Godrej

MUMBAI: Industry doyen Adi Godrej today said bringing in an anti-corruption law like the Lokpal Bill will not help weed out corruption from the polity and stressed that the malaise can be removed only by dismantling government's discretionary powers.

"I don't think only a strong Lokpal, even the kind of the Lokpal Bill that Anna Hazare's team has suggested, will by itself solve the problem. I think we have to dismantle government's discretionary handling of things," the Godrej Group Chairman said at a special session on the fallout of the corruption movement in the country, at the WEF-CII organised India Economic Summit here.

Be it business permissions or day-to-day permissions, described by some as petty corruption, Godrej said that unshackling of the present system of "case-by-case government permissions" will alone help in tackling the issue.

He also spoke about the economic benefits of ending or bringing down the scourge of corruption.

"If we are able to fight corruption successfully, I think it will considerably increase foreign investment. I also think if we are able to reduce corruption considerably, it can add about a percentage point to the country's GDP growth," Godrej said.

On the black money issue, Godrej said he was amused as to why the money has to be kept in Swiss banks which fetch around 1 per cent interest when parking it in the domestic financial system can fetch it a minimum of 8 per cent.

The government should make it appealing for such persons to keep the money onshore through its policies, he said.


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