Hyderabad Encounter: Is ‘Death Penalty Before Trial’ Really The Way To Serve Justice?

Like everyone, I woke up to happy news of the encounter of the 4 ‘rapists’ of the Hyderabad doctor. Revenge was done, the balance was restored and justice was served.

After the initial excitement, while you process the information you start to question, was this really justice? Is this the right precedent? Are encounters like this going to be a deterrent?

Representational image.

The four men who raped, actually allegedly raped (but who cares now they are dead and already convicted by society), what was their story? What happened to innocent till proven guilty? Or, even if you let go of many guilty, but not one innocent should be punished? Wasn’t our delivery of justice based on these principles?

The celebration of the encounter by our society mirrors the neanderthal morality our society has come up to, celebrating the passing of punishment without a trial. It’s no surprise then that in the same society there exists mob lynching for eating beef. Has this new century turned us backward? Has civilisation made a u-turn?

Is this where we are headed to? Next time an accused who is proclaimed guilty by an overzealous journalist, and made a sinner on social media, is his punishment already written in rock, death before trial? Imagine what if a man is framed? We all know that also happens, but if our prime-time journalists think he is an animal, is that grounds to be killed?

For everyone’s attention, in other news today, we know where we stand as a country and society, and insight is always good. Look at these headlines:

1. UP Woman Shot In Face When She Stopped Dancing, Shows Chilling Video

2. Delhi Man Kills Wife, Daughter-In-Law, Suspecting Affairs: Police

And so many other news of rape, sexual harassment that we don’t get to hear because they don’t make the necessary TRPs or grab readers’ eyeballs.

Representational image.

We would be fools to think that this shortcut punishment will solve or make anything better. The problem lies deeper, in the misogyny, patriarchy, gender inequality we all grew up on. The funny part is that we who are celebrating the encounter of these men readily and happily sent rapists and criminals to the parliament as our representatives.

Solutions are there. We need to start in schools and our homes, at the grassroots levels, we need to transform our justice delivery system, but that is much more difficult than pinning bullets into the accused. Then, another question arises, in this ‘instant-result craving society‘ are we ready to get our hands dirty? Are we ready to invest in long-term, but solid, change?

I have questions we can all answer, and then your answers will decide if we are a country with law and order or descending into chaos. Now, it’s your turn to answer.

Featured image for representation only.
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