The Madras High Court on Thursday directed the State government to apprise it of the structure of vigilance and anti-corruption mechanism set up in the State, the extent of work done by the officials concerned in the last three financial years and the degree of independence accorded to the Vigilance Commissioner and the Directorate.
The court ordered that these details must be submitted within three weeks.
Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy called for the details while dealing with a public interest litigation petition.
The judges lamented that corruption had become deeply pervasive in every sphere, including the bureaucracy and the judiciary.
They said the process of natural justice slowed down action against corruption and sometimes helped the corrupt get away from the clutches of law. It was also because of corruption that incidents, such as land grabbing and encroaching of waterbodies took place, the first Division Bench added.
The observations were made during the hearing of the petition filed by Karuppu Ezhuthu Kazhagam, a Tiruchi-based organisation. Its counsel P. Vijendran complained to the court about alleged largescale corruption prevailing in the Registration Department.
He pointed out that the Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption (DVAC) had raided the office of the Sub-Registrar at Villivakkam, Chennai, on December 13, 2018, and seized unaccounted-for cash.
Subsequently, a case was also registered and on the recommendation of the DVAC, the Sub-Registrar concerned was transferred to Thoothukudi. However, within days thereafter, he was transferred back to Chengalpattu, the lawyer claimed.
Contending that officials who enjoyed political support managed to wriggle out of the action taken against them even at the instance of the DVAC, the advocate insisted that the counselling for transfer of officials from one district to another was not being conducted in a transparent manner.
According to the lawyer, government officials enjoying a close rapport with Ministers and the likes got transferred easily despite facing corruption charges.