“The world will not be destroyed by those who do evil, but by those who watch them without doing anything”
I completely agree with sir albert einstein and for that reason I often take support of my blog and write articles to voice my concern over issues that affect the masses.
In this particular article, I will be talking about one such major issue.
“Extra Judicial Killings”
Why do I consider “Encounter Killings” A major issue?
Well I have a data set to support my concern.
Do you know how many innocents are killed in Fake encounters every year?
NHRC registered 1,782 fake encounter cases between 2000-2017, 44.55% of them were from Uttar Pradesh.
In 2013- A repentant Punjab cop confessed something disturbing.
” He, who was recruited as constable in 1989, claimed that, under directions from seniors, he had killed more than 80 people in “Fake Encounters”
Scary! Isn’t it?
Extra judicial killings are increasing at an alarming rate.
“These kind of executions have no place in a modern and rights-respecting society. They cannot be allowed under any circumstances, including a ‘war on crime’ or other public emergencies”
What are extra judicial killings?
Extra judicial killings are acts of violence carried out by law enforcement agencies without any judicial authorization.
Why encounter killings can’t be justified?
The major problem with encounter killings lies in the lawlessness of them.
Extra judicial killings completely sidestep legal procedures and can easily be considered as “Cold blodded Murders” By the police.
The right to life is acquired by being born, not bestowed by the state.
Article 21 of Indian constitution also states that:
“No person will be deprived of his life or personal liberty except in accordance with the procedure established by law”
Clearly our constitution grants an opportunity to the acused to defend himself (through counsel) and then if found guilty, can be convicted or executed.
Since, encounter killings deprive accused of this right they are unconstitutional.
If they are unconstitutional, why encounter killings recieves the support of masses?
Encounter killings have become rampant in police practice and due to recieving tacit support of some influential people and loud support of masses, it could start a dangerous trend.
Recieving applause from a large section of society including filmstars, politicians and genral masses reflects a loss of faith of people from criminal justice system.
For ardent supporters of “Encounter killings” the argument is simple-
“Judicial process is slow and it is difficult to secure conviction against acused, so, why not kill the acused and completely do away with the cumbersome judicial process”
This kind of mentality is dangerous, it negates the basic principles of criminal laws and paints a grim picture of the idea of justice in the minds of people. It also reduces our country to a mob nation.
Why police resorts to encounters? Self defence or instant popularity?
The way media glorifies encounter killings is dangerous and shameful.
Giving heroic names – “Encounter specialists” “Super cop” To police men further supports some police men’s misplaced machismo.
In many instances in past, In order to get instant popularity some police men have found to indulge in fake encounters.
While, in some cases it was a result of “abject surrender” Of junior police men to the orders of their senior officers Or politicians.
Greedy desires for plum postings, post retirement assignments and sometimes money ( In case of contract killings) further support their justification to kill someone in a fake encounter.
If current fake encounters persist, it will clearly communicate sheer disrespect of state and will be a disrespect for the lives of the citizens, particularly who reside in disturbing areas, and of those who loose their lives in fake encounters.
“Extra judicial killing” Is a breach of Indian constitution And human rights.
Delegitimizing the imunity given to the police, Expediting court procedures and empowering citizens to speak up against state agents, when they violate their rights, is the only way forward.