DailyPost 2076

If you think of last few decades, there would be criminal cases, which would flash in your mind, as being definitive to the political trajectory of the nation. The connection between democracy and criminal cases has reached to an extent, that it is taken as common place to find the politician named a suspect and accused every other day. From a minister’s bungalow to the prison is not something unheard of. If we add former ministers and bureaucrats and their cronies, we can get some idea of the contours of the problem we are encountering with. Families and friends have been the cohorts, since times immemorial. What does it augur for the Indian democracy and public life? The expertise India media has with the whole process from the FIR to the conviction, if they were to have for technology and management, it would have become a facilitator towards as new India.

In the criminal cases, corruption cases rule the roost, now they are getting into specialized areas of money laundering, given the nature of media blitzkrieg 24/7/365, it does not leave anything to anyone’s imagination. What does the country make out of it? Does it create an impregnable curtain of despondence? This is when nobody is looking into nepotism and non-criminal loss to integrity. The public domain seems to have accepted it as the norm and even discussing it is a waste of time. Today we have opinion on the cause of criminal cases, why the action was initiated inclusive of timing, ascribing it to things beyond the offence, connecting everything to political reasons. Why have we come have to this pass, we can leave for some other day, for sure it is doing immense disservice to both the criminal justice system and functioning democracy.

How much of media space criminal cases connected to politicians take? If we add what is euphemistically called political cases, related to agitations, protests, rasta / rail roko leading to criminal offences and the like, it would be difficult to find very few politicians at the grass root level. Many higher ups are also involved. The crazy logic bandied around is that these are not criminal cases and more often than not these cases have been withdrawn by various governments. It has become the norm. In the same manner, governments known by percentages, very rarely fall under the scanner of criminality. The logic of corruption gets into the fuzzy logic, when corruption cases are transformed into spiralling public issues, leading to change in governments / leadership et al, for it to come back into the system in a different format.

Sometimes change of governments leads to a flurry of criminal cases, the horse trading ones generally not making its way to the FIR level. Vote of confidence have also led for famous corruption cases in the annals of Indian political history. Then the worst of it all, bedlam inside the legislatures of the country, each succeeding one, turning out to be graver than the earlier. Political violence has hit the body politic of this country. Campaigning and electioneering are prone to violence and so is the election day. If it passes peacefully, it is because of huge deployment of forces, rather than the sanity of political parties. The counting day needs prohibitory orders! Election results have also led to grave criminal offences, killings too. Do we go for elections or do we go for war every election? Criminal cases and criminality seems to have been woven in the political tapestry of the nation.

Sanjay Sahay

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