The rule of law
Does the law count in India? Most of us have been cheated in a commercial transaction at least once in our lifetime, and reconciled ourselves to it because we know that there is no recourse under law in a realistic time frame. Now you can verify this with a look at the main head lines on google news on a random day: today.
The Hindu reports the latest in an ongoing story of law breaking by one of the most important political families in Tamil Nadu:
The Madras High Court on Tuesday rejected the anticipatory bail plea of Union Minister M.K. Alagiri’s son, Durai Dayanidhi, in the multi-crore illegal granite quarrying case.
Mr. Durai, for whom a special police team was on the lookout, and nine others are facing charges that companies owned by them mined sand and granite without permission.
HT reports developments in an involved case of corruption in Andhra Pradesh:
In a major relief to a senior cabinet minister in Andhra Pradesh, a special court on Tuesday did not order his arrest in the YS Jaganmohan Reddy illegal assets case.
The CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation) special court adjourned the hearing against minister for roads and buildings Dharmana Prasada Rao, a former minister, two IAS officers and others till Oct 9.
wo Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers Manmohan Singh and M. Samuel also appeared before the case.
YSR Congress party president Jaganmohan Reddy, former minister Mopidevi Venkatramna, bureaucrat K.V. Brahmananda Reddy and industrialist Nimmagadda Prasad were also brought from Chanchalguda Jail to the Nampally Criminal Court complex amid tight security.
The court extended their judicial custody till Oct 9.
Prasada Rao was holding the revenue portfolio and Mopidevi was in charge of infrastructure and investment in the cabinet of YS Rajasekhara Reddy, father of Jaganmohan Reddy.
The CBI believes the ministers violated norms to extend several concessions to Nimmagadda Prasad, one of the promoters of Vadrevu and Nizampatnam Ports and Industrial Corridor (Vanpic).
According to the investigating agency, 28,000 acres of land was allotted to Vanpic, for which the then government of Rajasekhara Reddy had signed a memorandum of understanding with Ras Al Khaimah.
The project was allegedly favoured by the government in return for the investments Prasad made in the companies owned by the chief minister’s son Jaganmohan Reddy.
It is not just cases of large-scale corruption. From Haryana, NDTV reports a numbing tragedy which horrifies us because of how common such cases have become:
A group of Dalits in the village are demanding justice for one family dealt two tragedies in the last few days. First, a teen, a Class 12 student, was gang-raped. 11 days later her father committed suicide. The attack on his daughter had been filmed on cellphone. The MMS was doing the rounds. He couldn’t cope.
For five days, his dead body has been at the mortuary at a local hospital. The victim and her mother say they will not claim it till they get justice. The fact that it took his death to propel the police into registering a case of rape is a grim reflection of the treatment given to Dalits here.
HT also gives us another horrifying case, this time from Maharashtra, of a kind which is also beginning to recur too often for comfort:
Five-year-old Shubh Rawal was strangled to death after being held for a ransom on Sunday. The police have arrested a 19-year-old student and detained a 15-year-old class 10 student for the murder of the boy.
To live with such violence is not normal. These incidents are consequences of a criminalized state machinery. There is no alternative to a cleaning up, a re-establishment of the rule of law.