India has showed some improvement in addressing corruption this year, ranking 85th among 175 countries as against 94th last year, graft watchdog Transparency International India (TII) said on Wednesday.
Denmark retained its position as the least corrupt country in 2014 with a score of 92 while North Korea and Somalia shared the last place, scoring just 8, it said.
In India’s neighbourhood, China moved to 100th place, down from 80th last year, while Pakistan and Nepal were at 126th position. Bangladesh was 145th and Bhutan 30th in the ranking. Sri Lanka was ranked 85th with India. Afghanistan was at a bleak 172.
According to the Corruption Perception Index (CPI) report by TII, “the CPI score for India increased by 2 points in 2014 from its 2013 score, helping India’s rank move up to 85 in 2014 from 94 in 2013”. India’s score stood at 38 as compared to 36 last year.
The improvement in CPI for India was driven primarily by two data sources — from the World Economic Forum and World Justice Project’s (WJP) index.
“A score increase on WEF suggested businesses in India were viewing the environment favourably with regards to their perception of corruption and bribery in the country”.
The WJP score also went up reflecting the perceptions of public sector corruption coming down slightly in India, the report said.
The report noted that in terms of the new government, the CPI possibly captured the anti-corruption mandate on which the new government was elected and the possibility of some new reforms in this area.
“However, the data used for CPI mostly was collected prior to the change of government and therefore this will not reflect directly into any of the CPI sources,” it said.
To calculate India’s position this year, 9 out of 12 independent data sources specialising in governance and business climate analysis were also used.
These included Bertelsmann Foundation, World Bank and World Economic Forum. They helped in measuring perceptions of corruption in public sector and cross country comparability.
In his reaction, Chairman of TII S K Agarwal, said the “new Government has got fully majority on agenda of good governance and now it’s high time to act and pass all pending anti corruption bills including the right of citizens for time bound delivery of goods and services and Redressal of their Grievances Bill”.