Friday, September 4, 2009

Adhi's misfortune

Adhi is a cycle mechanic working in a small shop in the bazaar area. He had his mother and a younger sister to take care of. His mother worked as a domestic help in a few houses. His sister Shanthi thirteen years old was studying in a government school. The owner had closed the shop for a day as he had to leave the city. Many days he had asked Adhi to take care of the shop without closing it. This time for reasons not known to Adhi he preferred to shut the shop.
Adhi with nothing else to do went out with a friend to see a cinema. As they were nearing the cinema hall, they saw a huge crowd belonging to some political parties squatting on the middle of a busy thoroughfare and raising slogans against the government. The entire traffic had come to a standstill with long line of buses and cars waiting for the squatters to give way. There were passersby on both sides of the road. The shouting became louder and the angry agitators were compelling the shops to down the shutters. The jostling of the agitators was so heavy that Adhi and his friend were pushed inside the crowd. It was then somewhere a chappal flew followed by stones hither and thither at the buses and cars. Someone attempted to burn a bus.
The police who were silent witnesses till then swooped into action. As soon as they whisked away the leaders, the crowd became restive and violent. The police resorted to a mild lathi charge and bundled the agitators in the waiting vans.Adhi found himself pushed into a van despite his protestations that he was an innocent passerby. He was charged with pelting stones at the bus and police and also attempting to burn a bus. All his pleadings were of little avail. Many were let out the next day. But Adhi became an under trial and was confined in prison.
Months passed with no sign of the case coming up before court. His mother and sister wailed at their misfortune and sought the help of the cycle owner. As ill luck would have it, he was a sympathizer of the party in opposition and had no political clout to get his release. He could only help the family financially initially for a few months. There were hundreds of such under trials languishing in the jail for periods more than what they would have spent had they been sentenced. The system is such that the mountain load of pending cases in arrears would take years to be cleared by courts that are manned with heavy shortage of judges. Neither the infrastructure nor the wherewithal to handle such large number of cases all over the country is just not there.
Meanwhile Adhi’s mother fell sick by working in more houses than what she could to augment the reduced income. His sister Shanthi a bright girl discontinued her studies and helped her mom. The family was ruined for no fault of theirs in the insensitive environment they lived. There are countless such Adhis, perhaps several thousands, suffering for the crimes they did not commit or not proved. If they are let off finally without the charges being proved as it happens in most cases, there is no compensation whatsoever for the loss and pain suffered. The unfortunate victims are left only to curse their fate and reconcile themselves to the cruelty inflicted.
Adhi’s sister lost her education, his mother lost her health, their debts increased and Adhi came out a broken man both in spirit and strength. Who should be held responsible and what system should be in place to prevent such hardships to the innocent who are invariably poor people? The rich however as every one knows do not spend time in jails

9 comments:

  1. Very Sad :( :( Heart Touching....Always Poor People Suffer bcoz of Rich People......No Proper Justice...The Justice, Equality Meanings Will Just Be In Their Speeches & Dictionary, But Never Apply In Real Life.....Good Story......Thanks A Lot For Sharing :)

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  2. Very true, this and many other cases have happened where innocent people have been made victims..fake encounters top the list, where innocent youth are killed and then gun fires are made to state that they are terrorists..Its a situation where nothn much can be done coz in such situations the law itself is involved in the crime and gets a clean chit..and as history has it the common man is the sufferer.
    Thanks for the thought provoking post.

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  3. It's an extremely sad state of affais..worse still because all we do is talk abt it....

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  5. Very Sad :(

    But ur final lines made me think alott..I too have seen many such incidents ...

    **Who should be held responsible and what system should be in place to prevent such hardships to the innocent who are invariably poor people? The rich however as every one knows do not spend time in jails

    CHange should come in the system, and th eperson who comes from the existing system or the person who was lost some thing because of it can be a change and equally can change the system. I prefer this. No one who has seen the incidents can not be as proper change as the person who actually felt it.

    Rich people are not staying in jail for longer durations. I wish this system would change soon ..:)

    Thanks uncle..It made me think and i'm happy fr that on top of every thing.

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  6. It is really unfortunate there are many people awaiting trials in courts for such long periods.... You have highlighted an important lacunae in our system..

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  7. So true...i wonder how Adhi wud have turned as he grew up..incidents like these leave huge scars on the people suffering and their family and no amount of time can heal or repair.

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