Corruption in and of Society

Corruption in and of Society
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That there is corruption in our valley is to state the obvious. But, what is not clear or what is dimly understood are the well springs of corruption here. It is often times assumed that corruption is about money and , at times, about status or, under adverse circumstances , is a function of poverty. ( The definition employed here about corruption is an expansive one; it is refers not merely to bribe taking or giving, which is just one component of the malaise but as something that is immoral and unethical). From this perspective then, we are almost all implicated in this odious evil. But, this might be , from a grand scheme of things, merely incidental. What we need to understand and develop clarity over are the well springs of corruption. It actually and, in reality, emanates from society. That is, it is , in the final analysis, society , its structures, demands, pressures and so on that create both the demand and supply of corruption. Consider a couple of examples. There is, in Kashmir, a morbid fascination for owning motor vehicles but obviously not all can afford these. There are issues of income and what have you involved that preclude ownership of cars. So, in order to buy and own one, those without adequate income have to cut corners and recourse to corrupt means. Similarly, our lavish and extravagant spending on weddings and the penchant for dowries, adds up pressure to the extent of people taking recourse to corruption. Examples galore can be cited to point out where, why and how the demand for corruption arises in our society. But, the question here is: can we do anything to stem this insidious trend? The answer is a qualified yes. First and foremost, we must develop sobriety and proportion about and in our social lives and economic needs thereof. We must, to employ a metaphor, cut our cloth according to our needs. But this is only possible when we develop a moral and ethical orientation that makes us disavow extravagance and life contented lives. This possible if and when we adhere to moral and ethical guidelines that purify our hearts and souls, a much needed end goal that will make us lead happier and fuller lives. These guidelines, fortunately for us, do not need to be invented afresh and anew. They are present since fourteen centuries in our Holy book and the model of the Prophet(SAW). Let us then dig these into these and live moral and ethical lives that correspond to the Quran and the Hadeeth!