In 1956, Lal Bahadur shastri, one of the most remarkable lives of the twentieth century, resigned from his post following a train accident that killed around 150 passengers in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Such was the integrity and ethical standards of leaders of those times.
Since those times, our political “class” has deteriorated so much that it has become a completely morally bankrupt segment. Today, I made my best efforts to think of politicians (they don’t deserve to be called political “leaders”) who had some integrity and deserved to be called leaders. Sadly, I could not think of many. A significant majority of them do not have the grits to take the ownership of all the unfortunate mishappenings in our so called “culturally rich society”.
The gory details of what happened on 16th December in a moving bus in one of the most crowded capitals in the world “freezed” my mind and thoughts for a few minutes. What has shocked me more since then was the response of the top officials of the Delhi police force and the government. Each of these statements reflected how much they loved their chair and position and how indifferent they are to the pains of people they are supposed to protect. It reflects how inefficient and incompetent our government machinery is.
In one of his comments, the commissioner of the Delhi police said that the police should be appreciated for cracking the case in a very short period of time. Appreciated?? Despite of its tinted glasses (which is unlawful), the bus in which this horrific incident occurred was never stopped at any of the checkpoints. The police force stood ignorant of everything going around them. Yet another time, the police force showcased its impotency by not preventing this horrendous accident from happening in the first place. The only time the police showed its “machismo” was when it opened water cannons and tear gas on the youth of this country demanding speedy justice. Shame on you Delhi police.
Then comes another surprising comment from the chief minister of Delhi that the girls should not go out at night. I have come across a lot of “dumb” political comments in my life and this one beats a vast majority of them. Instead of asking women to stay at home, why don’t you take some action and create an environment in which people can move around safely? Why doesn’t your government takes strict measures to prevent these kind of cases to occur? Why do you always have to work “inefficiently” on cure than on prevention?
Our prime minister broke all the records by first not coming out and connecting with the people and then by saying “Theek Hai (alright?)” at the end of his speech. May be the victim battling for her life spoke more words and stronger words than the PM did. I have always appreciated Dr. Manmohan singh for his scholastic abilities. Probably, he should have retired as a scholar and never taken up this position.
The debate over the punishment of the accused in this case is appalling in its own regards. If a beast becomes threat to a society, you usually have two solutions. The first is to make your best efforts to tame it. If multiple efforts fail, you take certain alternate measures that end the threat it poses to the innocent people in the society. I believe that punishment for any act of brutality and immorality against ordinary and innocent people should be harsh. The need of the hour is to send a strong message to those “beasts” that any uncivilized act in a civilized society will have zero tolerance. The people who inflict fear on others should experience fear themselves. To uphold humanity, government needs to have strict laws.
This entire incident also raises an important question in my mind. Do our social structures like schools and colleges teach us gender sensitization and tolerance?
I hope the girl gets well, the accused are “severely” punished and someone from the police or the government comes forward and takes the ownership.