Nandini Voice for the Deprived organized a debate competition for college students on “How to combat corruption ?“at Chennai on 23.1.2011, in the context of the forthcoming Martyr’s day on 30th January,2011.

A number of college students participated in the debate competition.

The following persons were the members of the panel of judges

• Mr. P.K.N.Panicker, President ,Chemical Industries association

• Col. Krishnaswamy, Retired Senior Army Officer

• Mr. V. Nandakumar, Former Principal, Public School, Singapore

• Mr. R. Sundararaman, Dy. General Manager, State Bank of India

• Mr. G. Krishnan, Entrepreneur

• Mr. R.S.Sriram, Fellow of Insurance Institute of India


1 Ms.Vaishnavi Aarthy.G.

B.Com. I Year

M.O.P. Vaishnav College for Women

2 Ms. T.Roseline Niranjana

B.A. II Year

Soka Ikeda College for Women

3 Ms.Madhumitha Sriram

B.Sc. I Year

JBAS College for Women

4 Sri..T.Shriram

B.Com. I Year

RKM Vivekananda College

5 Ms.A.Thaslema Banu

B.Sc. II Year,

JBAS College for Women

6 Ms.Vandhana Narayanan,

B.E. Biomedical Engineering,

Jerusalem College of Engg

7 Sri.M.Sathish

B.Sc. III Year C.S.

Gurunanak College

8 Sri.Arvind Vasudevan

B.E. I Year

SRM University

9 Ms.T.M.Suchitra

B.A. 2nd Year English Lit

Ethiraj College for Women

10 Sri.Prathiksh Prem

B.E. course

St. Joseph’s College for Engineering


1 Ms.T.Jahnavi

B.E. student

Adhi College of Engg. & Technology

2 Sri.Sridhar Bala

B.E. student

Adhi College of Engg. & Technology

3 Sri.Thayriam George

B.A. III Year English Lit.

Loyola College

4 Sri.M.Satheesh

B.A. II Year Political Science

University of Madras

5 Sri.V.Giridhar

B.E. II Year

M I T. Chrompet

6 Sri.K.Nagappan

B.A. II Year Media Arts

Loyola College

7 Ms.Soundarya.V.

B.Com I Year

M.O.P. Vaishnav College for Women

8 Ms.Pooja Sathyanarayanan

B.Sc. I Year

JBAS College for women

9 Ms.Mahalakshmi Sathyanarayana,

B.Sc. I Year

JBAS College for Women

10 Ms.Bhumika Popli,

P.G. Student

Asian College of Journalism

11 Sri.V.Sathiyan,

Dip. in Computer Science Engg.

R.V.S. Polytechnic, Tirupur

12 Sri.Aravind B.

B.Tech, II Year

Bharath University, Chennai

13 Sri.E.Gopalakrishnan

Student of Loyola College

14 Sri.Joe Britto

B.Sc. student

Loyola College

15 Ms.R.Anusha

B.Com. III Year

Soka Ikeda College for Women

16 Ms.M.Malathi,


Soka Ikeda College for Women

17 Ms.J.Anjana

B.A. III Year

Soka Ikeda College for Women

18 Ms. Sahana Parveen

B.Sc. I Year

JBAS College for Women

19 Sri.P.Kumaresan

M.Phil student

University of Madras

20 Sri.Maria Reegan

M.Phil student

University of Madras

21 Sri.Samuel,

B.A. II Year,

Presidency College


Highlights of the views expressed by the students who participated are given below

• In India the corruption starts from the birth of a person when a birth certificate has to be obtained and it extends up to death when bribe has to be given for cremation and for obtaining death certificate. It further extends even beyond death, if one would like to get legal heir certificate. Thus , corruption has become a total phenomenon in India today.

• Citizens are often impatient to get things done or lack the will to fight against corruption and sometimes even volunteer to give bribe to expedite matters. It is a strange phenomenon in India that several bribe takers are also bribe givers. One may take bribe as a government official and then the same person may give bribe to admit his son or daughter in a school. Thus, corruption remains largely cyclical.

• On the whole, corruption today is an attitudinal problem in India. People seem to be increasingly reconciling themselves that corruption is inevitable and one has to live with it. Thoughts of great leaders like Mahatma Gandhi who stood for truth are becoming history. Faith n the systems are now being lost.

• The image of politicians as corrupt persons have come to stay and a non corrupt politician is an exception rather than a rule . Most politicians in India cannot be reformed by reasoning with them , since many criminals and persons of doubtful integrity have become politicians , and hold positions of power. Unless there would be huge public pressure and pressure from media, the politicians would not improve their conduct and behaviour. While judiciary can help, unfortunately, judiciary itself is now being caught in several incidents of corruption, creating sort of doubts about the conduct of some judges themselves.

• There is no want of legislative laws in India to curb corruption. But, the problem is that those responsible for implementing the law s are themselves often involved in corruption.

• Some of those who claim to fight against corruption are now the senior citizens who have retired from jobs or taken voluntary retirement , who themselves have not done much to fight against corruption or might have remained as passive spectators, when they were working in government departments or elsewhere. Particularly, the All India services officers were picked up for criticism for speaking about the corruption issues only after safe superannuation.

• It is very important that top leadership in the Government should be committed to probity. Positions like President, Prime Minister and Chief Ministers , Judges , Vice chancellors are all positions of trust and no country can progress, if persons holding such positions become suspects.

• Unfortunatley, unlike the countries like Singapore, China or Middle East countries, punishment for corrupt persons are not swift in India. In the name of personal liberty, corrupt persons enjoy considerable freedom in India and lack fear of law and punishment. The judiciary which has the responsibility to punish the guilty is involved in counter productive and time consuming exercise and has largely failed in its role and is not fulfilling national expectation in this regard.

• The sure way to fight against corruption is to build revulsion in the minds of the students in the formative age group against corruption , by introducing corruption issue as a compulsory subject in curriculum for school students all over India.

• The students pointed out that they rarely get opportunities to express their views on national matters of concern, though they are allowed to vote after 18 years of age. All the national forums are occupied by politicians, retired bureaucrats , senior journalists etc. The youth are told that they should fight for the value systems but are rarely allowed space to express themselves and influence national agenda.. The youth are termed as agents of change but these “agents” are seldom given opportunities to express their views in the media or in any public forums.

• While new laws and regulations can be introduced, this would not help by themselves. The battle against corruption should be ultimately fought in the minds and hearts of the people, particularly the youth. A concerted campaign against corrupt system should be launched just as the campaign against child labour, AIDS etc. , now being launched. For this to happen, media must have less business orientation and should be more focused on building value system in the country.

• If media would not rise up to the occasion to carry out its responsibility to build pressure on the government machinery , politicians and public to refrain from corrupt practices , the situation could become hopeless with grave consequences for the national peace and progress.