Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Jyoti's Rapist Dies. Should I Rejoice?

One of Jyoti's brutal rapists has committed suicide. His lawyer claims he was "happy" and couldn't have committed suicide; that there's more to this than meets the eye.

My first reaction was - good, I'm glad. As for his being "happy", it made me feel there was no repentance in this vile culprit for his ugly crime and I was glad he was dead. I also felt that for the first time, other rapists, not only the four plus one minor co-accused but any rapist, will be really afraid. I felt that a would-be rapist will think twice because of the possible consequences.

But on thinking about it I felt that the police either messed up or fouled up.

If what the lawyer and the accused's family say is true, it could've been either the inmates, an outsider who gained access or the police themselves who killed the rapist.

If it was  the other inmates or an outsider or, if it was a suicide, the police weren't effective in doing their job properly. If the police killed him, they took the law into their own hands. Dispensing justice isn't the job of the police.Their job is to protect the public and apprehend wrong doers.

Either way, the police have let Indians down by allowing or committing this suicide or murder. Whoever commited this crime are vigilantes taking the dispensation of justice into their own hands. What if this happens to someone who is genuinely innocent and in jail while awaiting justice?

Let's see what happens with the other accused in their custody.  Indians want justice - not more proof of either police brutality or police ineffective laxity. Indians want a police force that makes them feel more safe than unsafe.

Let's also see what the verdict is for the co-accused. Hope it is what civil society expects - life imprisonment, severe punishment, no visits from families, hard labour and no comforts but NO death penalty.


Note: Feelings about these rapists and what they did to Jyoti are still running understandably high. But this post is about the police failing in their duty to protect a prisoner - any prisoner - in their custody. What do you think are the long term consequences of that?

17 comments:

  1. Suicide or Murder.

    The way he got his death is not worthy punishment to the crime he has committed . May gods take care of his wretched soul in hell...

    Travel India

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  2. Don't blame you for your sentiment, Vishal. I wrote this post though, with what I believe is or isn't the job of the police. Whether the accused deserved his end isn't the point of this post. How will the police non vigilance (or whatever it was) impact future cases, especially if the accused awaiting trial in jail is innocent?

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  3. I agree with the sentiment, KayEm! I'd, however, like the disclaimer 'If what the lawyer says is true...' repeated. One tends to lose sight of the fact that it may not as we go down the piece.

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    1. It could well be suicide, CS. But that still doesn't excuse the police for not doing their job of guarding a prisoner before he is produced before a court of law. What confidence can the Indian public have in their capacity to police well?

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  4. I didn't feel anything at first when I heard the news. A part of me was saying, glad that someone like him is no longer on the face of this earth and another part was saying how come his suffering came to an end like this... a coward ...

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    1. There is no doubt about it - nobody, except his family and the lawyer, are sorry he's dead. The anger at both his acts - one, of raping so brutally and two, of committing suicide before he'd been punished for his crime - is palpable.

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  5. In India, the police as well as the criminals (the big ones behind the smaller ones) have their own way of solving problems. Suicide in custody is one such.

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    1. I guess, subconsciously, we all know it happens all over the world. But there are consequences in place in many countries and that is what Indians should aim for if they are ever going to feel they have confidence in their police.

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  6. People are a strange species...i'd have preferred if he was hanged publicly....people dying in custody has too much mystery surrounding it..donno what to believe, what not to.

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    1. And that mystery leaves us ordinary people feeling disturbed with a total lack of confidence in public servants who are supposed to uphold the law.

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  7. That is a quite a different perspective to all that's been happening. I agree with what you say, KayEm. The police are entrusted a job to do and that should be done irrespective of the nature of the crime. Failure of that, I believe, will cause them to lose their trust subsequently.

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    1. All our public servants seem to have forgotten how important their accountability is for our democracy to work and for us to have faith in them, Arti. Thanks.

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  8. You have raised relevant questions. It is impossible to believe that a man with one functional arm could weave a rope from a dhurry, arrange for a bucket and commit the attack while three others were sleeping in the same room. It's fishy. Wonder why the media is not asking relevant questions.

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    1. Sounds an impossible feat, considering the injured arm. Can't help wondering at the media myself.

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  9. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  10. The point you have taken up in your sixth paragraph made me get goosebumps. If the police was ever oh-so-bold to take the laws in their hands then maybe what we're facing today in the society wouldn't be happening. It's either the suicide or a murder, I guess. While it is almost impossible for a human with a dysfunctional arm prepare his suicide. He was helped by the police or the other inmates itself. But whatever it was, it's a shame on police forces only. And, Media? It's nothing except a mere drama.

    - http://acriticist.wordpress.com/

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    1. Exactly, Criticist. What if someone awaiting trial WERE innocent? The police should be accountable to the common people but only people in power seem to matter to them. Ordinary people are like dirt.

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