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Report No. 161

2.2. Adverse impact of lack of probity in public life.-

It is quite essential to maintain these standards in publiC life, failure of which breeds all pervasive corruption undermining rule of law, violation of right to equality, lack of faith in courts and threats to democracy. Besides such failure poses a serious threat to the integrity, security and economy of the nation. [Vineet Narayan's case, supra para. 10]. Adverse impact of lack of probity in public life as pointed out by the Supreme Court in Vineet Narayan's case, (supra) reads:

"60. The adverse impact of lack of probity in public life leading to a high degree of corruption is manifold. It also has adverse effect on foreign investment and funding from the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank who have warned that future aid to underdeveloped countries may be subject to the requisite steps being taking to eradicate corruption, which prevents international aid from reaching those for whom it is meant. Increasing corruption had led to investigative journalism which is of value to a free society. The need to highlight corruption in public life through the medium of public interest litigation invoking judicial review may be frequent in India but is not unknown in other countries: R. v. Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, (1995) 1 WLR 386.

61. Of course, the necessity of desirable procedures evolved by court rules to ensure that such a litigation is properly conducted and confined only to matters of public interest is obvious. This is the effort made in these proceedings for the enforcement of fundamental rights guaranteed in the Constitution in exercise of powers conferred on this Court for doing complete justice in a cause. It cannot be doubted that there is a serious human rights aspect involved in such a proceeding because the prevailing corruption in public life, if permitted to continue unchecked, has ultimately the deleterious effect of eroding the Indian polity."

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