By the Editor: Siddharth Sehgal
In the bombardment of news about death of Sushant Singh Rajput and the “Wunderwaffe” Rafael jets from our News Anchor and Journalists who are known throughout the world for their investigative skills (pun intended), you may not have noticed the story of a man in Gurgaon who was beaten to pulp by Cow Vigilantes because they suspected him of carrying beef. For those not in the know, beef consumption and cow slaughter is banned in many parts of India because Hindus consider Cow sacred and you can be prosecuted by law for the possession of cow meat. But more often in the news we hear that vigilante groups take the responsibility of law enforcement in their own hands and the end result ends up in the news.
The point here is that groups of people are allowed to take law into their own hands and these people and groups believe that their actions or Lynching, as the term goes, will not have any consequences. More often than not Police become mute spectators in such incidents thinking that their intervention in vigilante or mob justice will invite wrath from those in power.
It should be a huge cause of concern for us, why you may ask? Well, it could happen to anyone, one just has to be at the wrong place at the wrong time. The Sadhus in Palghar were Hindus, saffron robes bearing Hindus if I might add, and yet they were beaten to death by a mob, which was also mostly Hindus, because they thought these Sadhus were child thieves, their violence was based on a rumor circulating on WhatsApp. There was a huge uproar over this incident in the whole country and rightfully so but we should not ignore other such incidents where victims are Muslims or Hindu Dalits. Lynch mobs are a threat to everyone, be it Hindu, Muslims or anyone else.
A mob does not have a brain or thinking ability, it does not listen, you can’t reason with it, in a mob an individual do what the other person is doing. If allowed, these groups will turn themselves into Judge, jury and executioner. There should be strict laws in place to deter such wanton acts of violence. Lynchings are a threat to public safety and it brings a bad name to our society and country, it leads to disturbance of peace and social harmony which can lead to riots. We should not look at such acts from the lens of religion; they are criminal acts and should be treated as such.