Thursday, February 11, 2010
THE VAISHNAVI TRAGEDY: SOME REFLECTIONS ON SOCIETY – Prof.K.Nageshwar
The brutal murder of Vaishnavi and the death of her father due to heart attack subsequently sent shock waves across the state . The woebegone story of vaishnavi plunged Vijayawada into an ocean of sorrow and grief. What should the society learn from this most tragic episode. The manner in which the crime was carried out was simply unbelievable.
The early reports suggest that family feuds owing to property conflicts is the prime motivation for this crime. The police claims that the alacrity with which the crime was resorted to virtually makes it impossible to crack down on the criminals and save the abducted girl despite their best efforts. The society does not satisfy with police explanations for the failure to protect the child but rather they want an action that could have saved her from the clutches of criminals.
Vijayawada is the scene of abduction. Guntur is the scene of crime. The distance is very small. It means the scene of operation of the criminals is very limited. The general feeling among the public is that the police could have made it virtually impossible for the criminals to move and there by made the criminals to run for their life. In such a situation, normally the criminals leave the child and concentrate on the way to escape. One thing is true. The criminals out smarted the police. The Police may or may not be at fault professionally. But, the society needs thorough investigation into police lapses if any. This is very essential at least in tackling future crimes. The police force should be modernized. They should be provided with most modern training and gadgets. The professional development of police force is hampered by the over politicization, complete preoccupation with law and order responsibilities only.
The ineffective criminal justice system is also emboldening the criminals. The inordinate delay in the investigation, most often criminals escaping the scrutiny of law are resulting in the loss of confidence in the system. The notoriety with which the crimes are perpetuated indicate the fact that our criminal justice system failed to invoke any fear among the criminals. The police-criminal nexus, the politician-criminal nexus are well known. This may not exist in the present case. But, the general environment is breeding the criminal gangs. The criminalization of politics, economy and society is breeding such inhuman criminal gangs. The murder of Vaishnavi was also carried out only by professional criminals certainly at the behest of someone. The modus operandi of the crime reveals this beyond doubt. Therefore, the tragedy could have prevented if the society was successful in disarming criminal gangs. The failure of the police as a system comes into question here. The criminal gangs virtually run a parallel empire. This shadow empire enjoys political patronage. The dirty money sponsors this illegal empire. This simple reality is portrayed in every Telugu film. But, the rule of law fail to crack down on the criminal kingdoms. The police is only a small player in this. Unless the politics and economics that sustain them is defeated, it is difficult to neutralize these criminal gangs and professional killers.
Human life has no value before the money. The human relations are increasingly replaced by and many a time violently by property relations. The collapse of family values and the resultant property feuds seem to be primarily responsible for this crime. Unfortunately the little girl was a victim of circumstances for which she is not responsible and on which she has no control. Women and children often become helpless victims .
The society is getting criminalized, dehumanized. Breakdown of family values often contribute to this scenario. The productive economy is being replaced by lumpen economy, manipulative economy. Quick money culture pervades over society .The productive economy at least has some values. The lumpen, quick money economy doesnot have any values associated with it. The claimants to the fruits of this economy and incomes never try to settle their claims based on values. The nasty influence of money in the family, social, political and economic relations is the central factor in all such crimes. Unless the milieu is corrected many more vaishnavis have to sacrifice their lives at the altar of such criminalizing relations. The professional criminals continue to pose a serious challenge to rule of law and civilized society.
The diagnosis is easy to make. But, it is difficult to suggest a prescription to put an end to such crime that put the entire civilized society to shame and shock. There are no dearth of ideas. But, the state should be ready to implement them. The society responds with a similar sense of outrage when an incident occurs. But, these things are as usual as the emotions die down. The civil society should actively prevail over the state to say enough is enough .There should be zero tolerance to heinous crimes. The police force should be modernized. They should be provided with the most modern equipment for communication and crime investigation and other gadgets. This is much more essential as in many cases the criminals have better logistics than the police. The police force should be made professional . The political interference should be done away with. The state government said that it would set up a fast track mechanism to try this case to bring the criminals and their sponsorers to book. Fast track justice is vital to instill confidence in citizens in the rule of law and create a sense of fear among the criminals. Only such a fear can act as deterrent.
The crime news and the crime serials are having a socially disastorous impact. The television channels and the film industry should be impressed upon for a self regulation. Failing which , the independent regulatory mechanism should be established.
The economy and politics should be decriminalized. A powerful peoples movement is needed to do this. A social and cultural renaissance is required to bring back values to the centre stage replacing money and mafia.
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Posted by Prof.K.Nageshwar at 11:49 PM