KOCHI: Former Kerala High Court judge and Armed Forces Tribunal member Justice Babu Mathew P Joseph on Thursday said more than corruption, it is religious intolerance that is unbalancing the nation.
He was delivering the inaugural address of the one-day seminar organised by the Vigilance and Anti-Corruption Bureau (VACB) on ‘Good Governance and Right to Service’ in Kochi.“The Constitution clearly states that the nation doesn’t have a religion.
It permits each citizen to practice a religion of their interest. The Constitution clearly defines that India is a secular and democratic nation. While practising the religion of their interest, there should be respect for other religions and religious practices. No one has the right to impose a rule of one religion on other people practising other religions. The religion is imposed on each person even before their birth,” he said.
Efforts to end corruption will not succeed until the corruption among those who hold power ends, he said.
“Nabbing government officials demanding bribes will not bring an end to corruption. The corruption should end at the top level among the people who hold power. No politician can claim that his/her party is 100 per cent corruption-free,” he said.
He was also critical of the discriminatory attitude towards workers who come to Kerala from other states. The perception that people from other states are behind crime incidents here is wrong, he said.
“Article 19 of the Constitution clearly gives freedom to move freely, reside and settle in any part of India. Even calling them ‘other state workers or migrant workers’ itself is wrong. They also enjoy same rights as the people in Kerala,” he said.
K Karthik, SP, VACB, Kochi range, said RTI and Right to Service will help in preventing corruption at government offices.“Kerala is a state where corruption incidents are lower compared to other states in India. With the cooperation of the public, we can bring an end to corruption. By sensitising the public about anti-corruption laws, corruption can be reduced drastically,” he said.