Shankar Mahadevan launches Hindi version of anti-corruption website ipaidabribe
Mumbai, Aug 8 (IBNS): Music director Shankar Mahadevan on Thursday launched Maine Rishwat Di (hindi.ipaidabribe.com), the Hindi language version of anti-corruption website ipaidabribe.com at an event hosted by Janaagraha, the Bangalore based NGO.
Ipaidabribe.com is the world's largest crowdsourcing platform against corruption focussed on the day-to-day demand for bribery faced by citizens.
In just three years of its launch, the site has recorded over twenty five lakh visits and twenty thousand bribe stories from over four hundred cities and towns in India.
The Hindi avtar of ipaidabribe "Maine Rishwat Di" is expected to reach over 600 million Hindi speaking citizens across India giving them an opportunity to report their corruption and bribe experiences, and significantly contributing to corruption data and trends.
Shankar Mahadevan Academy and Janaagraha are also running a global talent hunt called "Mujhse Hogi Shuruat" for the best lyrics for an anti-corruption anthem.
Speaking at the event Shankar Mahadevan said "Shankar Mahadevan Academy ties music with technology to spread the learning of Indian music. People like me in the entertainment industry can contribute to social change through our work. The Academy's and my collaboration with ipaidabribe and Maine Rishwat Di is something I look forward to".
The noted singer who is also part of the Shankar-Ehsan-Loy trio said he would sing the anti-corruption anthem that could then become a call to action to all Indian citizens to join ipaidabribe.com and Maine Rishwat Di in their fight against corruption.
Mahadevan announced that Pankaj Sinha, a contestant from Phoenix Arizona has been chosen as the winner of the "Mujhse Hogi Shuruat" contest by the Shankar Mahadevan Academy.
"It is important that citizens speak up and take action. The fight against corruption will be a long journey. But I am confident ipaidabribe.com and Maine Rishwat Di will achieve their lakshya," the singer said.
Laying emphasis on his point, the singer rendered his song from the Hindi movie Lakshya.
Filmmaker Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, who was also present at the event said "Janaagraha's work is all about social change that is action-orineted and does not stop with talking. I feel honoured to be part of it"
Mobile Apps and SMS services facilitating bribe reporting by citizens were also launched at the event. Citizens without access to smartphones or internet connections can file a bribe report by sending a message to 56363.
Describing the impact of ipaidabribe.com and Maine Rishwat Di, Swati Ramanathan, Co-Founder, Janaagraha said "ipaidabribe.com has succeeded in collecting data on day to day bribes and corruption based on an innovative crowd sourcing model. It also captures the anguish and distress that citizens experience when confronted with demand for bribes. "
The website provides citizens a platform to not only narrate their story or experience with bribes and corruption, but also aggregates data on amount of each bribe, office and location where it was paid. Further, citizens also have the option of reporting this to senior officials of the department where bribe was paid, Vigilance department and to the media.
The site also facilitate citizens to report stories where they have resisted paying bribes and where they have met honest officials who did not ask for a bribe.
Citizens in fifteen other countries including Brazil, Greece, Kenya, Pakistan, Ukraine and Mexico have found inspiration in this innovative crowd sourced model of fighting corruption and have built similar sites, making ipaidabribe.com a global phenomenon.
Also present at the event was Jayant Sinha, Managing Director, Omidyar Network India Advisors, who launched the Mobile Apps.
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