Sorry Sorry very much India, that I was a part of Bribe today. I tried my best to not give bribe nor let anyone give, but I just failed today. They say change starts from self and family. I believe that the roots of corruption is in our thought process and hence I changed my self and my thought process. I now believe that ‘Corruption is present if only I let it’. I wanted to instigate the same in my family because if a family changes a neighborhood changes, then a city and eventually entire country. But alas may be I did not do enough. I am sorry for falling short of my efforts.
I had chosen ‘Online Passport Application’ mode for my sister. I had done all the processing online via passport portal a month back and we got the ‘Passport Verification’ date few days back. It was near to my home, so my sister and mother went for the verification. I had ensured they carry every copy of all the possible documents required for verification, however there were only 3 documents subjected to be carried. They were there as per the appointment and all the process completed in an hour or so, given the number of people in queue for verification. Good, finally transparency at place, doing its work in a smoother way. I was happy how IT can transform our lives and how it was doing it in every small part of the country in every small things we do.
Happy with the verification, we were waiting for the ‘Police Verification Date’. My sister had exams so I do not get to contact her directly, because she was busy studying, I had to call Mom to explain everything and ensure things are in place. Simple protocol of communication. My sister got the call from Police verification yesterday and appointment was fixed for today evening. Her exams completed by noon. She arranged for all the documents and with Mom, went to Police station. The Officer over there asked few documents like Vote ID and others, which she did not take, as the other day at verification, they just checked 3 documents. The officer gave her list of say 10-12 documents and asked her to bring 2 copies of each.
Mom called me and explained the situation. I told her to get all the documents and get it verified. She asked, do they need to give any money to the Police. I said no. I said do not give any money undocumented. If even they had to give, do not give any money without reason, may be some processing charges or paper charges. That should be accounted for. She said otay. Verification was rescheduled for 8pm along with one reference, who was my father’s friend since many years. Mom called me an hour before 7. I had a meeting scheduled at 8pm too.
After 9pm I got free and called them to ask what happened. I had got 3 calls, 2 from Mom and 1 from Sister. My sister told me Police Verification process has completed and they have given 300Rs to the police. I said why. She said they asked. I told her I denied to give, then why. She said “Uncle gave.” I said fine. I spoke to them for 30 minutes explain all the efforts I had put to avoid any agent, any bribery and followed the transparent process provided by the Government to complete the ‘Passport Application’. After all the explanation I went back to my work.
I feel so sad and guilty for all this. I tried but I failed. I was a part of bribery. I would to apologize my country for my wrong doing today and I vow to be persistent here on. I would try to my best to avoid any kind of bribery from me or my family. Change starts from home.
I have another passport application pending for my 2nd sister in a month. I would update you about how it goes. Hope this time they take it seriously and do some efforts in avoiding BRIBERY.
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