One in two Indians paid bribes in 2019: Report

One in two Indians paid bribes in 2019: Report

Representative image. (DH File photo)

One in two Indian citizens paid bribes to get work done in the last 12 months, compared to 56 per cent in 2018, according to the third India Corruption Survey (2019), carried out by LocalCircles and Transparency International India. 

The survey mapped domestic bribery (national and state levels) over the last 12 months through roughly 1,90,000 responses. 

States that recorded the highest instances of corruption were Rajasthan, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand and Punjab. On the other hand, states recording the lowest instances of corruption were Delhi, Haryana, Gujarat, West Bengal, Kerala, Goa and Odisha.

Cash still prominent  

The vast majority of respondents (35 per cent) claimed that cash was the most used mode for bribes. This was followed by bribes paid indirectly by agents (30 per cent). Twenty-nine per cent did not have to pay bribes, whereas 6 per cent paid bribes in kind.


Source: India Corruption Survey 2019

Karnataka recorded 63 per cent of citizens paying bribes. Out of this, 35 per cent paid bribes frequently, 28 per cent paid bribes one or two times, and a meagre 9 per cent could get their work done without needing to make bribes. This is a clear spike in corruption when compared to 2018 when 20 per cent paid frequent bribes and 23 per cent paid bribes once or twice. While the corruption percentage of the country dropped compared to 2018, putting India on 78th spot out of 180 countries, Karnataka's corruption levels have seemingly gone up.


Source: India Corruption Survey 2019

Forty per cent of bribes were paid to get work relating to property registration/land issues done. Bribes made to police personnel came in second at 23 per cent, followed by Municipal Corporation at third place (20 per cent). At 16 per cent were other bribes including ones made to the Electricity Board, Tax Office, and Transport Office.

Thirty-eight per cent of respondents at the national level said that the reason they paid bribes was that it was the only way they could get their work done. It is evident that there is still a long way to go to battle the 'bribery culture' as 61 per cent of Indian citizens reported that there was still no functional hotlines to report instances of bribery/corruption in their respective states.