Are there any provisions in UN which can help us chase black money?
Yes, there are a few. And they might help us get black money back in India. Let’s look at the history of such negotiations to learn more about them and hone your understanding for Probable questions for IAS Mains.
- Tough negotiations on this subject in Vienna, Austria, in 2003 was a vital part of the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC).
- The first breakthrough came when the group established asset recovery as a “fundamental principle” of the convention.
- Then it was only a matter of laying a framework, in both civil and criminal law, for tracing, freezing, forfeiting and returning funds obtained through corrupt activities.
- What did the convention accomplish? Legal obstacles should be tackled with international cooperation rather than by domestic laws.
- Some of the relevant provisions of the convention are crucial to the question of recovery of assets.
- It provides that each state party shall take such measures as may be necessary to permit its competent authorities to give effect to an order of confiscation issued by a court of another state party.They are also required to share information with the competent authorities of another state, when necessary, to investigate, claim and recover proceeds of offences.
The UN, through its Office on Drugs and Crime, which leads the fight against illicit drugs and international crime, has been given the responsibility to implement the convention, particularly its assets recovery provisions.
Refining India’s approach
- In the case of India, difficulties may have arisen not in establishing that the sums amassed abroad belong to India, but in proving that the assets were illegally obtained.
- There is a need of domestic management and disposal of seized and confiscated assets and the management of the return and disposal of assets recovered in the context of international corruption cases.