DailyPost 2798

Is there a connection between criminality and the criminal justice system? If yes, then how direct is it and by extension how all encompassing? What is criminality to start with? It is a behavior that is contrary to or forbidden by criminal law. What is the normalization of criminality in our day to day existence, wherein, that becomes completely discounted and is treated as nothing wrong being done by the individual, group, enterprise, organization or even the governments. The fact of the matter is that if criminality becomes a mindset by practice as a matter of growing up, as a matter of being professed as practicality, can the criminal justice system match societal needs?

We start with the wheeling dealing in an election season and we are going through one. How much money changes hands, and how much of it gets confiscated in a criminal case and worse still seized on behalf of the Election Commission of India. Between the leaders, parties, workers and those who fund, everything is known, but how many of them report to the police or any other enforcement, investigative agency concerned with that genre of crime. Professional hoodwinking is the most visible manifestation of an all pervasive criminality. Once elected they decide on our destiny. So while all big proclamations of democracy, welfare and development are being flaunted all around the place, this is what happens behind the scenes.

The enforcement or investigative agency functions in mid-air. The strength of the civil society is as wafer thin as the commitment of the media. Expecting that the people in know of critical facts of any crime to come on their own and inform the concerned agencies, is expecting the moon in our mother of democracy. Nearly everybody is in an adversarial mode vis a vis registration of case and investigation. It speaks of the level of criminality we are steeped in. Criminality in our system goes a step further. It also means how well you can exploit the system to your advantage, through known loopholes, which have been perfected over the years. That is the functional criminal justice system.

The recent cases of Prajwal Revanna, Swati Maliwal and the Porsche accident, have to be seen in the backdrop of the criminality ecosystem we have created over the years. Influence operating: political or otherwise, mis-guiding investigation, handling with kid-gloves, certainly no positive support to the cause of free and fair investigation speaks of a system where you can get away with your legal responsibilities. Some cases get registered, investigated too with great difficulty, and taken to the logical conclusion. But does that suffice the needs of criminal judicial administration? Is the criminal justice system in control or the all pervasive criminality taken over it deviously?

Sanjay Sahay

Have a nice evening.

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