There has been a sharp 74 per cent increase in the number of corruption cases in the state in the four months this year and it is even higher in Mumbai, the commercial capital.
Pravin Dixit, director general, Anti Corruption Bureau, says this is due to the increase in awareness among the people, whether in the urban centres or in the rural areas.
"Our crackdown on these cases has been very strict over the past few months. We are conducting various drives by SMS, through meetings at the taluka level and interaction with government employees," Dixit said on Thursday.
From January 1 to May 6, 2014, a total 362 cases have been registered by the ACB as compared with 208 cases in the corresponding period last year. Similarly, the number of persons caught in connection with these cases has shot up from 265 in the period last year to 494 this year.
In Mumbai the cases have doubled, from 15 in the four months last year to 30 this year.
"We have been vigilant about those organisations and departments from where we've received maximum complaints. We keep a tab on the goings-on of suspect officers through technology and a tracking mechanism and interacting with them as well as those people who visit them," Dixit explained.
The ACB has also set up a helpline, providing two toll free numbers in each district on which complainants can alert the agency about such cases.
"There has been a 50-60 per cent increase in the number of complaints we receive from various departments. While we receive the maximum number of complaints with respect to the police, revenue, land records and power departments, we are now also getting cases with regard to other government agencies," an ACB official pointed out.
Lately, the health, education and sports departments have figured on the list. The agency hopes that like in the Khalsa college case more students and parents will come forward to lodge complaints. In the four months this year, 11 cases have been with regard to education, as compared with 22 in the whole of last year.
"Education is a vulnerable sector involving the future of students who pay huge amounts not knowing that they can complain to us. Many of these cases are gross violations of the RTE Act and admissions are up for sale nearly everywhere," said Vishwas Nangre Patil, additional commissioner, ACB.