"The paper puts forward a small but novel idea of how we can cut down the incidence of bribery. There are different kinds of bribes and what this paper is concerned with are bribes that people often have to give to get what they are legally entitled to. I shall call these 'harassment bribes'. Suppose an income tax refund is held back from a taxpayer till he pays some cash to the officer. Suppose government allots subsidized land to a person but when the person goes to get her paperwork done and receive documents for this land, she is asked to pay a hefty bribe. These are all illustrations of harassment bribes. Harassment bribery is widespread in India and it plays a large role in breeding inefficiency and has a corrosive effect on civil society. The central message of this paper is that we should declare the act of giving a bribe in all such cases as legitimate activity [PDF]. In other words the giver of a harassment bribe should have full immunity from any punitive action by the state." [more inside]
posted by vidur
on Mar 31, 2011 -
"..when a victorious chief minister openly admits that he himself approached the leading newspaper of his state with money for “positive stories” after learning that the newspaper had signed a “package deal” with his rivals to print negative stories, you had better sit up and take urgent notice"
posted by Gyan
on Feb 12, 2010 -
Tehelka is the Indian journalism Web site that published video of bribe-taking on the Net, launching a Watergate-like corruption scandal at the highest levels of government. Since breaking the story, however, "Tehelka’s staff has gone from 120 people to three; its office has been vacated; its staffers arrested and harassed; and its debts have spiraled." But the site perserveres. And Malaysiakini seems to be following in its footsteps. As Doc Searles says, it's "the duct tape of journalism."
posted by hairyeyeball
on Sep 24, 2003 -