Asian governments get tough on corruption

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi
PHOTO: Reuters

HANOI/MUMBAI - Governments in Asia are cracking down on corruption amid growing public anger over a spate of graft cases involving public servants.

Authorities in Vietnam have recently indicted government officials and others in a bribery case involving Japanese official development assistance, or ODA, while the Indian government is planning to introduce criminal penalties for companies that bribe public servants.

Defending party legitimacy

"The party and the state will resolutely continue its fight against corruption," Nguyen Phu Trong, general secretary of Vietnam's Communist Party, told voters at a meeting in Hanoi on July 18.

The party set up a high-level organisation called the Central Steering Committee for Anti-Corruption in 2013 as part of its efforts to better investigate cases of suspected graft.

Those efforts are paying off. A total of 593 people were prosecuted in connection with 256 corruption cases in 2014. The number of cases uncovered in 2014 was up 10 per cent from the previous year.

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