TODAY -

The corrupt tiger

S Balakrishnan *



At the outset, let me seek forgiveness from the real tiger, the majestic tiger. The tiger I am referring to here is a man tiger; no, no, not a male tiger or a man-eating tiger but a man nicknamed 'Tiger'; a mean, man Tiger.

A tiger, whether in the wild or in captivity, cannot be corrupt; it is the humans who have branded the animals as such fox as cunning, owl as wise, hyena as mean, lion as the king, etc. It is Nature and evolution that have given each animal its own trait. The master story teller Aesop is also to be blamed for branding them as such through his fables.

Coming to the mean man tiger, he headed an office where it was generally thought there was not much scope for corruption or for money making. How sad! But he was a master in corrupt practices that he minted money in all possible, impossible and unthinkable ways. Alas, Yamaraj was in a hurry to take Tiger away soon after retirement; else Tiger would have authored a book on 'How to Make Quick Money within 30 Days'.

We have missed a literary masterpiece. They say that a man's main weaknesses are three 'W's woman, wine and wad (of currency)! Succumbing to easy money-making (wads of currency), he also fell for a woman (girl), and had weakness for wine.

These three vice "W"s led to his downfall in another 'W', i.e., Workplace. He had a fourth vice as well smoking. While his government was creating awareness against use of tobacco, particularly in public places, he was a chain smoker in his office chamber itself. His a/c chamber resembled the gas chamber of the Nazis.

The Tiger was drooling for a lady casual staff, half his age, just his daughter's age. He was so carried away by her 'smartness' that throwing away decorum and decency he pillion rode in her scooty to restaurants. This Beauty and the Beast went together even on official outstation tours, posing together in official functions! All of his weaknesses were used by his second-in-command, a clever fox, for his own benefit, without the arrogant Tiger realising that he was being drawn into the quicksand.

The Tiger's cronies, mostly of his community, blindly carried out his commands for the crumbs. As long as Tiger got his share, he overlooked what his cronies did and earned. To safeguard his interests, Tiger indulged in Thuglak durbar by shifting and transferring the 'suspects & spies' along with post to other States. To his shame, most of these orders were later cancelled by head office, some within a week of joining at the new place, causing loss to exchequer. Was he suffering from superiority complex or was it a mask for his inferiority complex, people wondered.

The tormented staff was forced to inform Tiger's would-be son-in-law of his immoral and illegal activities, of CBI inquiry, etc., on the eve of the wedding with the Tiger's dentist daughter. What a scene this would have created, I leave it to your wild imagination. The Tiger returned to office with more vengeance, indulging in victimisation, dragging himself further into the cesspool. Tiger was lucky.

He had on hand a series of campaign programmes, each worth Rs.10 lakhs! It was a windfall; he was literally rolling on wads of currency! So, flouting rules, bills worth Rs. 20 lakhs were settled in hot cash, calling the parties to his chamber. Lakhs of rupees were drawn and held by him for months together. Naturally, complaints flew left and right to all concerned, right from the Minister, Members of Parliament, Members of Consultative Committee, Head Office, and down to the Section Officers.

The Tiger had a hell of time cooking up replies to pacify one and all. This was only as long as CBI did not appear in the picture. And CBI did knock at Tiger's den. This CBI raid shook up every one at Delhi, though he tried mollifying them that it was the action of some unwanted elements who he described as "terrorists"! To his utter shock, from his own office and under his own office seal a press release was issued to all the media on CBI raid.

This resulted in a flood of embarrassing enquiries from the media; some newspapers carried the item promptly after getting details from the horse's mouth (I mean, the Tiger's mouth) itself. These paper clippings were promptly sent by the "terrorists" again to all concerned causing irreparable damage to Tiger's already maligned image.

He really deserved a Doctorate for devising ingenious ways to earn easy money. But all these came to an abrupt end after CBI inquiry, which only proves that they were all corrupt practices. People at command were finally forced to act and Tiger was caged to Delhi. Reward for corrupt activities! A national daily from Delhi had questioned the rationale behind this transfer decision.

But he had a 'royal' god father in the union cabinet. As we all know, the caste factor also ties up the hands of bureaucracy against acting sternly. At the fag end of career, he was even pampered with a plump posting as head of a division with controls over newspaper import quota. Unlike any house in the vicinity of his native village, he had a lift in his house there! That amply says everything.

However, though no official action was taken against him, even after retirement Tiger was tormented by CBI and had to shunt from his native place to Chennai; he was seen in the CGO complex in Chennai where his previous office and CBI are both located, with a bent head, trying to cover his face. Tiger must thank Lord Yama for saving him from more disgrace.

He came roaring like a Tiger with tweaked whiskers and went mewing like a Cat with bent whiskers! The clever fox that assisted the Tiger met a disgraced and pitiable death before the very eyes of the affected staff members who then believed in eternal justice.

This is dedicated to our 'satarkta' (vigilant) Central Vigilance Commission which, as usual, is 'celebrating' the annual Vigilance Awareness Week from 29th Oct. to 3rd Nov., this year. The 'vigilant' CVC replied that there was nothing against the Tiger to be acted upon, while we had solid proof.

Well, when the vigilant cat chooses to close its eyes then the whole world becomes pure and genuine! How vigilant the CVC is, can be seen from its letterhead which quotes its Telegraphic address as "Satarkta". Well, what is wrong? You see, telegraphic service in India was closed down five years back in July 2013!

To cap it all, the theme of this year's (2018) is a weak slogan of "Eradicate Corruption Build a New India" (by year 2022, India's 75th Independence Anniversary). CVC defines CORRUPTION as A DISHONEST OR UNETHICAL CONDUCT BY A PERSON ENTRUSTED WITH A POSITON OF AUTHORITY, EITHER TO OBTAIN BENEFITS TO ONESELF OR TO SOME OTHER PERSON.

The CVC's Integrity Pledge urges the citizens to report any incident of corruption to the appropriate agency, probably for appropriate action or inaction, depending upon the individual reported upon? This slogan is as evergreen and ever-cheating as the politicians' 'Garibhi hatao' / 'Eradicate Poverty' call. If these two are eradicated, how can the politicians ever survive!


* S Balakrishnan wrote this article for The Sangai Express
The writer can be reached at krishnanbala2004(AT)yahoo(DOT)co(DOT)in
This article was posted on 17 November , 2018 .


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