THE PHENOMENON OF MOB JUSTICE
“The more one analyses people, the more all reasons for analysis disappear. Sooner or later one comes to that dreadful universal thing called human nature.”
We often come across mob violence and particularly lynching of individuals by an angry mob. People often believe it as a form of giving justice. Lynching can be defined as an extrajudicial punishment meted out by a mob. Lynching is an illegal act and a crime. It is a crime against humanity. We need to give a thought as to why people indulge in mob violence and especially punishing a person for a petty crime like theft. One of the obvious reasons is that people do not have the faith in the system. They feel justice should be done right at the moment by themselves. It is also a fact that most of the people in a mob are normal people who are driven away by the anger and frustration of a mischief. That this perverse anger leads to the loss of life hardly comes in their mind. There are also instances of mob indulging in arson and destruction of houses and properties of an accused in an offense. This does not sound wise for the fact that the properties do not belong to the accused only. The family members of the accused might not have been aware of his/her crime. For example, when a person commits rape and the whole is punished for his crime, either by ostracizing them or by destruction of properties. That is a mere foolishness and an inhuman act. How do the family members have the prior knowledge of his crimes so that they could have prevented him for doing such a grisly crime? The family consists of children, women and even elderly persons also. Is the mob right in delivering justice where they are in turn committing offense against the other innocent people, who by chance happen to be related with the accused? It will be extremely incorrect to presuppose that all the relatives of an accused are responsible of the same crime. If a person is a sex-pervert, it will not imply that the whole family has this trait. If so, than the neighbors and other acquaintances of the accused can also be held responsible. In that case rest of the people of Manipur should ostracize the Leikai and acquaintances of the accused. Justice for a few people in anger will be injustice and sufferings for innocent lives. Here arises the need for the law to take its course, thus finding out the guilty.
We also need to consider whether a person has no right to correct himself for the crimes he/she committed. Of course no one should go unpunished for the crimes he/she ever committed. But it is for the law to judge what actions can be taken .A person should also be given the chance to correct himself and prisons and rehabilitation centers are meant for that. A person being done to death for minor crimes like stealing a bicycle or a gas cylinder is not a rare incidence. No person with a sound morality will appreciate it or term it a civilized act. It is as if the day to day killings are not enough. And the miserable fact is that the real “big thieves” are out of reach for the people or the mob. People also need to be conscious of the fact that this kind of violence can also lead to serious problems like communalization. If the person is being killed by a mob happens to be from a different community than it can pave a way for a grave crisis.
Has our society become so much intolerant that we are not at all concerned of a single life? Have people lost the sight to view things in a civilized manner. Another aspect we can dwell upon is that, whether the day to day killing which encircles people has had a psychological impact and thus indulging in such acts. The first finger to be appointed is against the law enforcement agencies and especially the police. People have absolutely lost their faith in the police and also the judiciary. If the police had taken actions in time many lives could have been saved. The lacksidal attitude of the police has made the place lawless land. Morally the police have become so corrupt that they only look for profit in every aspect. Thus it becomes normal to charge people for an FIR and the “rate” varies as per the policeman and the station. Policing has become a way of earning only and duty to safeguard people has become an illusion to them. Thus it is obvious that people will surely lose their faith in them. Either there is a flaw in the way they are trained or with their idea of policing. The consequence of losing trust in the judiciary is that people take law in their hands. It is astonishing as to why law never takes any action on any of the violence. If at least once some kind of action were strictly taken than no doubt people will restrain themselves and thus have faith in the judiciary. The lack of wisdom with the Government, politicians and police has even made the Central paramilitary force and army mock at the judiciary of the place and thus engaging in blatant abuse of civilians.
It is apparent that law and order has totally failed but people must also not go back to medieval ways of giving justice, for we are now in a modern era. People need to be morally strong and act with great restraint and effort should be made in saving life and not taking it.