It should not be termed as a miscarriage of justice. India’s jurisprudence is based on the principle that with even an iota of doubt, no person should be judged guilty. For a person to be pronounced guilty, evidence should be strong enough and there should not be any doubt. Based on this jurisprudence, there is nothing wrong in the judgement delivered by a lower court in the Phelu Khan lynching case. The honourable Magistrate has clearly pointed out the flaws in the investigations. From the judgement, it is now clear that prosecution adopted lackluster attitude in a case which is immensely critical in context of plurality of the nation.
Are we to believe that not a single eyewitness was available for the prosecution when the unfortunate incident took place in front of hundreds of people and was even video graphed? How serious the investigating authority was can be judged by the fact that even after two years, the investigators could not trace the person who made the video of the lynching. So the very authenticity of the video could not be established. Moreover, even after noting several injury marks, the post mortem report opined cardiac arrest as the cause of death. Was it not the duty of the investigators to go for another post mortem to ascertain the nature of the injuries and whether those injuries were deadly or not? The prosecution did nothing. From the act of the prosecution it is clear that the case didn’t get enough attention as deserved.
If the prosecution didn’t leave all these loopholes while investigating, the judgement could have been different. The people who had murdered Phelu Khan would now have been behind the bars. But that didn’t happen. All the accused have been exonerated, which will serve as a morale-booster for the so called cow vigilantes, a new species in Indian society. This species surfaced very recently and creating havoc for the last couple of years by attacking the very foundation of India. The so called vigilantes have become such a headache that even Prime Minister Narendra Modi has on number of occasion urged them to obey the law of the land. But the Prime Minister’s statement failed to check things. On any Rajasthan road during nights one will find the cow vigilantes patrolling and harassing the people. They are basically hooligans. They use religion as a shield to hide their crimes.
To term them as a creation of right-wing politics of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will not be fair. Rajasthan, where the Phelu Khan incident took place two-tears ago is now ruled by the Congress. Yet. There is no respite from these groups. If those groups enjoy BJP’s patronage, then why is the Congress government not taking action against them? The reason is not very difficult to understand. Inaction of the Congress government only proves the fact that all the political parties in our country are heavily dependent on muscle power. So no matter which party comes to power, these people will continue to enjoy political patronage. Such patronage is severely damaging the social and secular fabric of our country. But is anyone listening?