While it is accepted that corruption is a systemic problem in the South Asian region, questions remain about its underlying cases. The article identifies two developments that provide opportunities for corrupt practices to abound in the SAARC region- to democratic polities and the transition from state-run to market-driven economies and the growing trend of political parties to look for illicit contributions to fund expensive election campaigns. In addition for the need to have greater transparency, the article argues that fostering respect for the Rule of Law and putting in place an enforceable Right to Information are key steps in combating growing corruption in South Asia, particularly in the context of distribution of state largesse. The article also discusses the role of new anti-corruption institutions and growing activism on the part of an independent judiciary as well as the possibilities that arise from adopting the formulations of the Inter-American Convention against Corruption and Transparency International.



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