THE REVENUE department of the Maharashtra government continues to be the most corrupt one in the current year as per statistics revealed by the state Maharashtra Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB). Of the 637 traps laid by the ACB between January 1 and August 10 this year, 154 of the successful traps were on employees of the revenue department. The police department came a close second with its officials being trapped in 142 such cases.
A senior officer with the ACB said that this has more or less been the trend for the past few years. “When it comes to departments like revenue and police, there is a lot of direct public interaction, which increases opportunities for corrupt officials to demand bribes for the smallest of things,” he said.
On most occasions, the officer said, corrupt practices are followed by revenue officials when residents approach them with applications for transfer of ownership of a plot. “We are hopeful that with such facilities being moved online, the number of bribery cases will reduce,” he said.
As per statistics, of the 186 persons from the revenue department arrested in the 154 ACB traps, majority of them – 149 – are class 3 officers, mainly head clerks and sections heads. The total amount recovered from the traps in the current year from the revenue department has been over Rs 15 lakh.
The same is the trend in the police department with class 3 officers namely police head constables turning out to be black sheep, with 148 of the 184 persons being trapped belonging to this category. In the past year as well, the revenue department had topped the list of successful traps by the ACB.