The Government of Assam, Home and Political Vigilance and Anti-Corruption, has released new contact information for the public. This initiative aims to enable citizens to communicate with the appropriate government anti-corruption agencies, ultimately reducing corruption in Assam.
The new contact details, including an email address, toll-free phone number, WhatsApp, and Twitter account, were shared on September 27, 2023. According to the announcement, anyone can now report incidents of bribery involving government officials or employees to the control room.
Background of Anti-Corruption Assam
- In 1946, a special team in the government was created to stop corruption. This team was led by a Deputy Superintendent of Police. It was supervised by a higher officer from the police department. In 1959, they made a new position called the Superintendent of Police for this team.
- In 1964, because of the suggestions from a committee, the government made a new role called the Vigilance Commissioner. This role was in charge of the anti-corruption team instead of the Deputy Inspector General from the police.
- Until 1981, retired judges from the High Court became the Vigilance Commissioner.
- In 1975, they made the anti-corruption team an official police station.
- Then, in 1983, they created a separate department for vigilance and anti-corruption. This department was led by a high-ranking police officer.
- In 1991, the government said that officers from this department, who were at least at the rank of Inspector of Police, could investigate cases of corruption under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988.
- When the Assam government gives specific instructions (direction) to the department, they start looking into things.
- They investigate if a government employee has used their power dishonestly or for corrupt reasons.
- They also investigate if there are complaints of corruption, misconduct, or wrongdoing by government employees, including those in high positions like the All India Services, in connection with the state government’s affairs.
- When cases are filed and examined by the Anti-Corruption branch, the Director of Vigilance & Anti-Corruption informs the Political Department’s Commissioner and Secretary in Assam about the investigation’s results.
- If the Director believes that someone should be prosecuted (charged with a crime) and permission from the Governor is needed for the prosecution, they send a complete report of the investigation to the Chief Secretary in Assam. The Chief Secretary takes further action on behalf of the Political Department.
- If someone other than the Governor has the authority to approve prosecution, the Director of Vigilance & Anti-Corruption, with the approval of the Secretary in the Political Department, sends the investigation report to that authority for permission to prosecute.