The editorial, “Dare to tell” (May 24), was timely. By ordering the prosecution of two witnesses who turned hostile in the Jessica Lal murder case, the Delhi High Court has not only taken a step towards securing prosecution witnesses but also put a check on witnesses being bought by the rich and powerful. To encourage citizens to come forward and tell the courts what they saw, the state, besides ensuring their security, should give them travel cost and compensate them for the work hours they lose.
The state must also think of rewarding persons who help accident victims, and save women from molestation, rape, etc. This will remove fear from the minds of helping people and encourage them to assist the law, rather than avoid police and courts anticipating harassment and expenditure.
Col. R.D. Singh (retd.),
Before punishing the witnesses for perjury in the Jessica Lal case, it is important to understand why they became hostile. When the choice is between the wallet and the bullet, it becomes difficult for an average citizen to persist as a witness, especially when big names are involved. A witness wishes to help by speaking the truth but backs out for fear of life. No one who wishes to live in peace would dare speak up against criminals.
While action against those who lie under oath is welcome, I wonder why people who come forward to file complaints and testify in court do a U-turn later. Only speedy trials can ensure that witnesses do not change their minds under monetary inducements or threats.