‘Honest wives rarer than honest IAS officers’

M.N. Vijayakumar is an officer of the Indian Administrative Service (IAS). He belongs to the Karnataka cadre. He has served in Karnataka for the last 25 years. And he is only one of three IAS officers, of the 200 or so working in Karnataka, who has filed his assets and liabilities.

That’s the good news. The bad news is that Vijayakumar, currently of the Principal Secretary grade, has been transferred six times in six months during the H.D. Kumaraswamy regime.

From September 2006 to February 2007, Vijayakumar has sat on a different seat in a different office in a different capacity—each time for “reporting serious corrupt practices by senior officers”.

His wife, Jayashree J.N., has now launched a spirited, even brave, campaign on the web that throws light on how the IAS folk deal with “black sheep” in their midst and how they use the convenient alibi of “disobedience” to quell debate, discussion and action.

Jayashree asks:

# Is informing the head of the bureaucracy repeatedly about issues of corrupt practices an act of disobedience?# Is persistently insisting to follow Government notified policy an act of disobedience?

# Is bringing to the notice of higher authorities the violation of Government policy and asking the violation to be brought before the Cabinet an act of disobedience?

# Is communicating intention to approach Lokayukta an act of disobedience?

# Is preventing (by following procedure) dishonest officials, from doing things against public interest, an act of disobedience?

# Is insisting officers to act as per the Right to Information Act an act of disobedience?

# Is repeatedly bringing to the notice of higher authorities activities against public interest an act of disobedience?

# Is cautioning the higher authorities against continuing officers indulging in activities against public interest an act of disobedience?

# Is making the fight against corruption one of the objectives in the Annual Confidential Report an act of disobedience?

# Is saving crores of rupees to the Government and the Public, an act of disobedience?

# Is introducing innovative methods to involve public in the implementation of works an act of disobedience?

# Is introducing innovative methods to help redressal of grievances so that the poor are not made to run from office to office an act of disobedience?

# Is acting as per the calls given by H.E. the President and H.E. the Governor an act of disobedience?

# Is being the first officer to declare assets to Lokayukta an act of disobedience?

# Is informing the Hon’ble Lokayukta in the presence of CS, ACS and all other senior officers on how to go about tackling corrupt officers an act of disobedience?

# Is informing the higher authorities that the issues he raised have nothing to do with the place or post going to be held by him an act of disobedience?

# Is informing Government that he never sought modification of transfer in past 25 years of his service an act of disobedience?

# Is not turning a blind eye to corrupt practices, going around him an act of disobedience?

# Is giving suggestions to the Head of the Bureaucracy in public interest an act of disobedience?

# Is complaining against dishonest practices before a promotion an act of disobedience?

# Is giving honest and frank opinions to higher authorities an act of disobedience?

On the site, Jayashree says she found “honest wives [of IAS officers] are rarer than honest officers].

“An honest officer cannot morally raise his voice against corruption unless he is supported at every stage by his wife and children, which demands different types of sacrifices from time to time by each member of the family. It is not enough if the officer is honest but each and every family member also should be honest, if the officer has to fight against very powerful corrupt persons.”

Visit Jayashree’s site: Fight corruption now