TAMIL NADU

Need for strict enforcement of laws to curb criminal activities

Incidents of organised crime, some of them involving inconceivable brutality, are on the rise in Kerala, with the criminal trail often leading to the rich and the powerful. It is being argued that the law enforcement system and the criminal justice system need new means and weapons to stop the trend. The counter-argument points to the dangers of draconian measures in the name of fighting crime. Our readers respond:

Age of violence

Alvin Toffler in his recent book has predicted that we are entering the age of violence. Confrontation will be the name of the game not conciliation; violence will be the key factor of determination. We are already seeking it in our society, State, and nation and all over the world.

The pressure of society, politics, markets and economies have made living a cutthroat competition to survive and rule or succeed. Violence is the short and quick solution embraced by all. If one is mighty and has the resources he can achieve anything through violence, however, brutal.

One has learned to live with it. It shocks nobody when one reads so many deaths owing to mindless violence in newspapers. Things are not going to change. The age of violence is here.

K.P.C Nair

Palakkad

Police, a puppet

It is not due to lack of proper laws to curb the crimes that the crimes are increasing in the State. Criminal laws are well equipped to curb crimes. The Indian Penal Code (IPC), the Criminal Procedure Code (Cr. Pc), Arms Act, Abkari Act, Explosives Act, Narcotics Act and Police Act contain various provisions which, if effectively implemented, can stop incidents of organised crime to a large extent.

The State Government's plan to introduce legislation for dealing with anti-social activities such as `goondaism' and to add more muscle to the police force is merely an eyewash to divert public attention.

If the Government has a bona fide intention to curb crime, it should take stringent measures without interfering with the investigating agency. At present, the police have become a puppet in the hands of the ruling party. Politicians have nexus with criminals. Stern action should be taken against corrupt police officials.

The introduction of a new law will not serve the purpose. This law seems to be very draconian and it may be misused and made a weapon in the hands of the ruling party against its opponents for political gain.

It is not only because of our judicial system that criminals are let scot-free but it is also owing to lack of proper and efficient investigation and triviality in prosecuting the case. The police should be made independent under the control of the judiciary.

Pramod Krishnan

Kannur

Foreign money

Earlier, organised crimes were unheard of in Kerala. Unfortunately, the situation has undergone a total change. The root cause of rising crime rate may be the uncontrolled inflow and utilisation of foreign money. The Malayali is determined to enjoy life, but is oblivious of the corresponding hard work that he is expected to put in. This is especially true when he is confined with the contours of Kerala. He is ready to indulge in any crime to have an easy and comfortable life. On the other hand, those expected to act as custodians of law and order are conniving with the criminals. They `fail' to book the real culprits and bring them to book. People do not want to raise their voice against social and economic offences. Leaving a criminal scot-free is as bad as punishing an innocent.

K. Aravindakshan

Kochi

Revamp needed

India is more a capitalist nation now and less like a democratic one where an affluent few enjoy the perks of power and money. Kerala, unfortunately, is no exception.

Most of the organised crimes go unchecked or unsolved, thanks to the corrupt officials eager to serve the interests of the criminals in return for a small fortune. The involvement of politicians and support of the police have been doubtlessly proved in many crimes. Yet, the law-enforcing agencies are hesitant to curb them.

With the law-enforcement system becoming corrupted, new systems consisting of handpicked, young and efficient officers need to be put in place. It is the lenient and unautocratic system that instigates the assailants to act irresponsibly.

Stringent measures introduced by uncompromising administrators, put into effect by upright officers will definitely bring about a fruitful change.

Sherin Bidar

Ernakulam

Corrupt officials

There is no doubt that Kerala is turning out to be one of the most crime-prone States in India. Cold-blooded murders are on the rise in the State.

The Kanichukulangara murder case would have been a normal accident had the criminals not left a loophole. Some leading newspapers mentioned that the police personnel who came to investigate the murder arrived in the culprit's vehicle. What else is needed for the guilty ones to escape?

From top to bottom, the law and order department should be made corruption free. And there should be a sincere effort from every one including the civilians.

Aparna Jacob

Cherthala

Failure of systems

Crime is an everyday, universal phenomenon, but generally, even where it is rampant, the law-abiding society can keep clear of it and its consequences.

The failure of law enforcement is not that mafia tendencies flourish, but that the civil society cannot be sufficiently and suitably insulated from them.

Quite often, the end users of money are at the receiving end of either violence or deception, while the others usually are unaffected. Even reputable financial and hire-purchase companies find it perfectly acceptable to employ goons to retrieve dishonoured mortgage payments or to trace vanishing borrowers.

Evidently, the reason for this situation is that law enforcement and justice dispensing systems fail in discharging their primary duty to uphold civil rights, all round.

Nevertheless, even if they are efficient, they can only react to situations, not control or pre-empt them, something that is better possible by the exercise of public wisdom and prudence.

Devraj Sambasivan

Alleppey

Adopt measures

The galloping crime rate in Kerala over these years has put a question mark on the administrative profile of the State, which stand tall in this discipline among other States. The harsh facts have brought up many deficiencies of the weak administration. If this scenario persists, then the consequences would give birth to another Bihar. Moreover, rising unemployment is a prime factor that forces vulnerable youth to take the easy way out.

Moreover, conventional weaponry has to be replaced by the modern ones in order to equip the police to tackle any sort of situation. Proper counselling should be given to make the force more effective. Infrastructures like mobility and inter-communication have to be enhanced to trace the culprit. .

P. Sanjayan Nair

Kottayam

Nip in the bud

Our law-enforcing system and criminal justice leave much to be desired. Corruption and malpractice in the system should be nipped in the bud. Crimes of every kind should be studied, dissected and all loopholes investigated upon. Deployment of the most modern techniques of crime detection and management is imperative. Inimitable, subtle methods of crime investigation with appropriate preventive measures is also a prerequisite for efficiency.

Swarnam Ramakrishnan

Kochi

Interaction sought

The incidents of organised crime among unemployed youth is an inevitable social disorder in the absence of any organised effort on the part of the Government to channelise their energies and time to productive use. In a State where octogenarians rule the roost, the younger generation has to run from pillar to post to get a stable and secure job. A section of the new generation, who drops out of education, naturally turn to violence and ciminal activities to achieve what they cannot achieve through fair means. The few fortunate who occupy high positions in society should encourage the less fortunate to come up in life through hard work. Criminalisation of politics is a double-edged weapon and this can be used against those fostering it and this dangerous consequence should not be overlooked lightly. The only course open to elders is to instil confidence in the minds of youngsters and set an example to them. Batons or cannons cannot stop crimes. It can be stopped only through a heart-to-heart interaction among the haves and the have-nots.

K.P. Karunakaran Nair

Thiruvananthapuram

Unholy alliance

The process of organised crime is not short. In some cases, criminal/anti-social elements have links with the law-enforcing agencies and have the patronage of politicians. In other cases, political and official interferences do not let the police personnel perform their duty fearlessly. At times, the police begin to act when the situation is out of control. It is certain that if the policemen nip crimes in the bud, it would not worsen. Moreover, if the courts dispose of criminal cases without much delay, many hardcore criminals on bail would be behind bars thereby resulting in the decrease in the number of crimes. It is not the new means and weapons that are required to arrest the increasing incidents of organised crimes. The Government and the police department should show their will and determination to act.

S. Paul Dhason

Thiruvananthapuram

Overhaul policing

There is no dearth of legal means to prevent crimes. Utility of laws is in its strict enforcement not mere existence. No culprit must be allowed to escape unscathed through legal loopholes or via political `influences.' The spectre of harsh punishment meted out to the guilty must deter others from committing similar crimes. Special forces both in uniform and civil dress need to be employed in vulnerable areas such as bus stands and college junctions. The Government has to give special focus on the atrocities against women, which is assuming a dangerous proportion day by day.

It is high time that the proliferation of the gang of ruffians is curbed. No one must dare to rise above the law.

There is speculation over the nexus between the police and the criminals. It will be an utter mockery of the law if police are hand-in-glove with the thieves and goondas. There is an urgent need for cleansing and overhauling the police force. Police must be made aware of the seriousness of tackling the menace of crimes. Public can repose faith upon the law of the land only when it is enforced correctly.

Mohammed Riyaz A

Thiruvananthapuram

Right move

The Government decision to give more powers to the police force to prevent the anti-social activities in the State is a move in the right direction. Police force should be made more efficient to face new challenges and there should be a definite strategy in dealing with various types of crimes. Introducing new weapons alone cannot strengthen the police force. Police training need to be more scientific so as to help the police personnel handle various `new generation crimes.'

Aswin U

Pathanamthitta

Palakkad

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