Thursday, September 24, 2009

Nalini then, Afzal Guru now: Why Kasab may never be hanged!


“Whatever I have done, I have done on earth, and I should be punished here. I do not want to be punished by God. Please punish me by hanging,” - Ajmal Kasab

"You cannot pick, choose and hang. Nowhere does it happen in the world including Pakistan, There are still about 28 mercy petitions pending before Afzhal Guru's can be addressed." - Union Law Minister Veerappa Moily

Kasab may actually beg to be hanged but the 'compassionate' Indian legal and political system wouldn't just let him go down without a 'fair' trial.

Ha ha, as things seem to suggest now, Nalini, the accused No 1 in Rajiv Gandhi's assassination will very soon walk free. Here is the 'punishment' she got for conspiring the assassination.
After getting caught soon after the assassination in 1991, an elaborate investigation ensued. In January 1998 the investigation concludes and the trial court sentenced all the 26 accused, including Nalini to death. But in 1999, the Supreme Court annulled the death sentence on all but 4, including Nalini. The 4 sentenced for death filed for a mercy petition with the president and in 2000, Nalini's death sentence is commuted to life imprisonment because apparently India just couldn't afford another orphan - Nalini delivered a kid while in prison.

That's not all. Even while engaging the hypocrite Indian system, Nalini put her time to better use.

  • She spent time to pass Master of Computer Applications (MCA) course and will soon be awarded the degree by IGNOU. We are told she was brilliant at it.
  • She was 4 month pregnant when she landed in jail and then delivered her baby while in prison. Her daughter was brought up by her mother-in-law in Sri Lanka. The girl then grew up, sought a student visa to study in India, on the ground that there was danger to her life in Sri Lanka! Following a petition by Nalini, the very broad-minded Madras High Court, concerned for the girl's safety, directed the equally broad-minded, acquiescing Centre to grant entry permit to her daughter, on the grounds that she was an Indian just like her mother!
Phew, may be Rajiv Gandhi, the late Indian prime minister was not Indian enough! The whole process is disgusting, and only shows a weak heart and mind of this nation which allowed other terror acts to follow later on.

Someone who assassinated a former prime minister for the actions he undertook in his position as prime minister, instead of getting punished, gets a new life, complete with highest education of this land for her and her daughter. That is something she wouldn't have even got in the dungeons of LTTE areas in Sri Lanka, where she was indoctrined to carry out the most daring assassination in Indian history. Nalini Sriharan accused #1 in Rajiv Gandhi's assassination is rewarded for what she did. What next, maybe she will stand in an election and just, maybe, enter parliament!

India's 'humanitarianism' is always under test and is ever victorious. Soon after the Nalini's death sentence is commuted, there was another high-profile case.

  • Afzal Guru, convicted for his role in the terrorist attack on the Indian Parliament in 2001, was sentenced to death on December 18, 2002 by a trial court.
  • This was confirmed by the Delhi High Court and upheld by the Supreme Court in 2004.
  • The sentence was to be carried out on October 20, 2006 in the Tihar Jail here, but it was stayed after his family filed a mercy petition to the President.
As our esteemed law minister said, Afzal Guru's case will be attended to after the 20 odd petitions preceding his are dealt with. If India finds it hard to hang someone convicted for waging war against state then why the hell is it so nauseatingly harping on Pakistan to bring the 26/11 perpetrators on trial? Its baffling indeed that India thinks that US, Pakistan or any other country would take it seriously when it does not take its own investigating agencies' fruitful investigations seriously and simply cant implement the judgements of its own courts, even in cases involving a direct attack on Parliament and assassination of a former prime minister. It's simply sickening to see P Chidambaram hectoring Pakistan.

Well, with the Nalini's precedent, Afzal Guru may never ever be hanged and may in fact walk free. And maybe, so will Kasab. After all tamasha we have had with Kasab's trial, even considering that he gets death sentence, he will not be hanged anytime soon, going by our honorable minister Moily's logic. Kasab will file an appeal with supreme court, If that doesn't work, he files the dreaded mercy petition with the president, while still munching the biryani (which the court would have allowed on humanitarian grounds). Then he has to wait for his turn after those 28 petitions. That would take years, and when his case finally comes up, the President may show sympathy because he would have by then, supposedly,already undergone mental torture with the death sentence hanging over him. Death sentence would be commuted and maybe after 14 years in prison, he will be out, on humanitarian grounds. Its a pity those 170 odd who died and the 300 plus who were injured in Mumbai attacks aren't considered Humane enough.

All the outrage felt when Rajiv was assassinated fizzled out so much so that Nalini's release is now a non-issue after 18 years of dithering. The same could happen with the Parliament and Mumbai attacks cases. If not Mumbai attacks, what else could wake up this system from this hypocrisy and laziness?

19 comments:

Sharath said...

I think Indian govt in a way in inclined to being attacked so that it can show to the world how badly the country was bruised and gain sympathy. And for that to happen the attackers have to be alive.(How can you gain sympathy if you retaliate & hang the attackers?). Moreover, it might be thinking these attackers are in a way helping them control population. I guess our population control portfolio is outsourced to Pakistan!!!. Is there any value for the life of a common man in india?

myopinion said...

While I totally understand your agony and stand with you against such pattern of implementing law, I have another view. That is - in a way some of them can be treated like a mentally ill person. Mentally ill while executing the assassination plan and all these years in jail could be a treatment of a sort. Now if she comes out of jail and turns out to be a hacker (thanks to the MCA and her intelligence) or rekindle the smoked out LTTE then it would be the biggest sin on part of the Indian Law. Or I’m sure the Madras govt who gave her life would also give a software job (lol) in Chennai if not make her an MP as you mentioned. On a serious note I pray she serves to be a living sample to people giving out a message not to take the path of violence, a message louder than that which her death sentence could give.

I. said...

Amar,

Does killing the person who killed justify at any level? Does it level justice?
I differ you on these. If there can be proactive steps taken, it has to be taken on many other levels, which will prevent the lose of lives, settlement of dissident issues etc..

Tess

Raghavendra Keesari said...

Well said Amar, Indian laws should be strict,If this Sympathy, merciness goes on with all the culprits, then no doubt, we have to face more attacks in future. There will not be any fear left towards the law.

Raghavendra Keesari said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jagannadh said...

I react to this blog on behest of Amar. Excuse me if you find the content unpaletable.

Few points to ponder upon before getting into the actual reaction:

1. How was the constitution of India formed?
2. What was the pitch with which IPC(Indian Penal Code) was formed. I suppose it was aimed at reforming criminals.
3. How many reviews to the constitution and the Indian Penal Code have happened till date? And were there any competent peopole involved while the amendments were incorporated. Did the pitch change in addressing the issues?
4. How can Rapists escape the noose when attempts were made to bring in capital punishment (women voluntary organizations opposed the same)

There are lot more things to ponder upon but the root cause for these pathetic court decisions can be attributed to the following:

1. There has been no attempt till date to get a professional(I meant time bound)appraoch to the trials in court
2. Indian Penal Code still haprs on reforming the criminals (when parents are not able to mend the ways of their children at home). I feel the punishment that is awarded by the court should create fear in the minds of Individuals and the fear should be so high that people should dread the thought of commiting an offence in the Indian soil. This will be a paradigm shift that needs to be brought in India (but is already practised in the middle east and some of the sout east asian countries). Will India be ready for this even in the next 100 years with the kind of criminals ruling the country(crime even in the form of tax evasion)?
3. I know from my uncle (who is a leading advocate in the Secuderabad Jurisdiction) that the judges today are not even capable of giving a proper judgement on their own. Judges are bribed and Lawyers become Judges by paying bribe(see the pity there is corruption in the court of law as well).

Any number of attempts will fail in solving these kind of issues unless Politics is taken up as serious profession (bring in IIM kind of institutions for this) rather than leaving it to the LOCAL leaders or the criminals.

-JK

Amar said...

Sharath,

Rightly said. There is no value for lives of Indian citizens. Hemanth Karkare would die because of poor bullet-proof jackets but someone like Nalini would get highest education for her and her child. The likes of Hemanth Karkare and others in police and army are asked to lay down their lives while the government unfailingly gives lifelines as it did to the likes of Afzal Guru, Nalini and 3 other accomplices of her who have been sentenced to death.

We have a misplaced compassion because we have hypocrite system out of touch with reality.

Amar said...

Vishnu,

I disagree. Mentally ill don’t meticulously plan, coordinate and execute assassinations and terrorist strikes. I am talking about exceptional cases here where crimes have been committed with full conscience and not in a momentary lapse of sense. The crimes have been planned for months and years and ‘dry runs’ made. Do you know that Nalini and her gang did a dry run on VP Singh on one of his visits to Tamil Nadu? Dhanu, the suicide bomber tried garlanding VP Singh but he instead took the garland by hand. With this dry run, they gained confident that they can similarly reach Rajeev and garland him to death. The death squad prepared with such preciseness. Far from being mentally ill, they are much more mentally sound, very strongly driven and highly motivated to teach India a lesson. And they did. Now people of their ilk see clearly that India is a soft state because it has enough mentally delusional people!

A bomb explodes and the causalities, dead and injured are rushed to a hospital. Now, a follow-up bomb explodes there! What kind of perverted minds would plan this kind of terror? And do you seriously think these minds can be reformed? They have been indoctrinated for years to just kill cold-bloodedly. Didn’t we see that 'live' in Mumbai attacks? The cases we discussed have been meticulously investigated for years leaving no doubt the cold-bloodedness involved. The case went through trial courts, high courts, supreme courts and even after all courts upheld the death sentence, we still discuss this here because the honorable president is yet to make her mind just like her predecessors. Why?? Is she any wiser? Why do we have this trial tamasha if the end result is going to be this? In fact the president's office has already been compromised over silly politics. So what is her high moral ground?

Amar said...

Tess,

The cases I discussed are not related to any dissident issues. This is terror in its naked form. It wants to just kill and conquer. Masood Azhar wants an Islamic caliphate with you and me part of it. You willing?? I am not.

I don't see awarding punishment as some sort of leveler. I see it as a necessity to preserve law and order and in these exceptional cases we discussed, we are talking about India defending the rights of its citizens to live. For this to be accomplished, India should induce fear and at least, caution into the terrorists attacking it so that they don't recklessly come attacking Indian towns and cities. Harsh punishments would first slow down these attacks and eventually stop them, if the police, army are convinced this war on terror is a serious effort.

If we don't punish the terrorists when they are caught, we eventually get punished much more seriously as we already saw.

1994 February - Maulana Masood Azhar arrested by Indian police, imprisoned.
1995 Foreign tourists kidnapped to force Masood's release. Terrorists kill the tourists.
1999 Kandahar hijacking- Terrorists take a planeful of passengers hostage and get Masood released.
2001 Masood masterminds parliament attack; 6 Police, 1 civilian dead; irreversible damage done to country's confidence in fighting terror
2008 Masood masterminds Mumbai attacks; killing at least 173 people and wounding at least 308, including foreigners, women, children.

Next ??

Yugandhar said...

Amar-If you remember, in the movie ABHILASHA, Chiru fights that no person should be HANGED. According to Law, Punishment to the convict is given with an intention to kill that criminal thoughts in person and not the person. And I see no wrong in it. The guilty might take advantage of it but it is how the people of law deal with it. what are your comments?

Sharath said...

No matter how strict the law is there will be attempts like these.As the law gets stricter..the criminals get smarter. Every time there is an attack..the criminals are promised an escape route..even if they get arrested they tell how easy it is to get them out by giving the example of Masood and how he royally walked out of the prison. 'Its a cake walk bhai. gabraaav nahi'. And then there is this soft corner towards women. I was reading few weeks ago how the woman accused in mumbai blasts was being portrayed by the lawyer. "She is just a devoted wife and had to follow her husband". Yea she might be a rare species in this age of livin relations & friends with 'benefits'. But a women who cold heartedly chooses the places..where most people can get killed is 'innocent' and he was serious. He could dare say that because it is India..because in this country it is still believed that it is god who decides how many children a woman could bear, women are innocent, devoted wifes & unpunishable. The govt wants to please every community and milk its votes, please the rich & get funds, please the famous & get them to campaign and this inclination to cater to everyone & everything is making a mockery of the law and rendering it ineffective, when it comes to punishing the very people(law breakers) the govt needs to stay in power.

Amar said...

Jagan,

I agree. The purpose of IPC was to reform criminals.

However, i have couple of points to make here.

1) My case here, as i repeatedly specified in the post and the above comments, relates to exceptional cases, which the Indian courts confirms as those belonging to the 'rarest of the rare' before they award the stricktest punishment (capital punishment). So these cases more or less confirm the criminal is beyond reform and so is sent to death.

2) If indeed the purpose of punishment is reform we can have a look at the conditions in prisons and can safely say the pupose is not being achieved. The overcrowded prisons have actually become networking spots where the prisoners add to their contacts and maybe, even skills through fruitful interactions. The Jaish-e-Muhammad was formed after Masood spent good number of years in jail. So maybe the vacation in Indian Jail actually rejunevated him!

My point about this whole reform-minded ness is simple. If a system fails to take care of law-abiding citizens how can it take care law-breakers and reform them!? Its too high a task for such an inefficient system where cases run for years in courts. Its misplaced target, especially in an age of terror.

IPC just aped the west which never ever had serious fanatic terror to tackle with. They viewed every crime as sort of psychological flaw in criminals and tried to reform criminals. And yes, they had ample resources. It makes sense for them to discuss abolishing capital punishment. Not here in India in this age! These terrorists did not do just one assasination or an attack on a public place but they symblize the larger threat we face today, a threat that is hellbent to destroy the moral fabric of this country.
Nor can India afford spending its precious money on these mostly foreign or foreign influenced mercenaries when millions of its own populace are deprived of food, education and healthcare.

Yug,

I understand ur fascination abt everything Chiru is linked to! :) I hope the above response answers ur comment. I believe in these exceptional cases, there is no scope for reform. Even if Nalini now is genuinely reformed, the fact that she was not hanged 9 years ago was a mistake. Once supreme court confirms death, all need is the order to be implemented. Political expediancies that dictate the mercy petitions should be removed completely by taking away the power of clemency from President. Unfortunately, this is the only way now as the president's office lost credibility.

Amar said...

Very well said Sharath. Its political expediancy at work that is letting these terrorists off the hook.I have no doubt in fact that the 20 odd petitions are put on a backburner just to facilitate the delay and subsequent annuling of the capital punishment awarded in these high-profile cases of Nalini and Afzal Guru. Otherwise, if the president is serious, how long does she need to study a case and come to a decision? I mean, is she so busy sitting on the cases for years?

abhay said...

very good post indeed......the indian govt should be ashamed for keeping this people alive.......for WHAT? i ask???to trade them when another Kandahar takes place and this terrorists are exchanged......criminals like these are kept alive.....refugees are allowed to settle in India...with resources going into mantaining them...at whose cost?the Tax Payers who work their butts off......its not strange when one does not pay tax.....anyways it wont make a great deal if we only talk about it......and people who talk rubbish like killing the killer does not solve the problem should be ashamed of themselves...its because of people like u ,who get elected at the centre that the country is in a mess.........

Gattu said...

@ Yug & Tess,

What is the prime aim of the punishment?
1. It should change the person if it is forgivable
2. Atleast the punishment should be in a way that no one else should dare do that act in future

You keep them in jail by giving life imprisonment, is there any guarantee that the story of masood will not repeat?

As a lay man to the stuff of IPC, blah, blah, in my opinion, atleast terrorists should be hanged till death on the same day of the judgement....

sravan said...

ar,
IF the culprits who can arson a bus and kill 42 innocent passengers can roam free I think Nalini who is a part of team who killed Rajiv and many others can also be pardoned.
I do not know why no one raised a word then and now everyone is against it?

Amar said...

@Sravan,

Firstly, Is it logical to argue that as something was not sufficiently opposed earlier, its should not be opposed now?

Secondly, I am not sure which case you are referring to. If it's the Dharmapuri one, the casualties were 3 and the death sentences are yet to be confirmed by the Supreme court. The final hearing is scheduled for July 27, 2010. This case is yet to join the President's clemency list! So obviously its not under scanner.

Anyways comparing Kasab's case with this is out of place. Kasab didn't end up killing someone in a spontaneous loyalty show gone wrong. He came on a monstrous mission and we saw that.

sravan said...

No,
What I was referring to was the chilkaluripet Bus Burning case in 1993. The convicts were sentenced to death but were graned presidential clemency. I have never seen a negative report from media or social groups against that. That was welcome by all means.
I think their crime is more gruesome given the fact that they killed 23 innocent passengers just for sake of money.
Nalini's case and even Afzal's and Kasab's is not that gruesome compared to that.

sravan said...

please have a look at this link
"click here"