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Legally Indian…
by Ayush Prasad
Ayush Prasad is an engineering student of Manipal Institute of Technology. His interests includes- Journalism, Writing, Reading and Developing Technical Papers. He is currently working on a project with DRDO Bangalore, for Humanitarian Demining using Radars.

May 14, 2010

Speak to any American about global warming, he would begin with statistics, describe with statistics and end with statistics representing third decimal place. But talk to any Indian about it, he would describe with an example, which would be a story. Why do Americans speak in numbers while Indians narrate stories?

America is a technologically driven economy, the mindset remains firmly technical, which requires a quantitative approach to everything. Things have to be measured to be convincing. But India has remained an agrarian economy, a peace loving country, where mathematics was restricted to greats and measurement was only done for weights and distances. Instead folklore and storytelling was common. Due to free time and lack of availability of written information, verbal communication became prominent. These things were later documented resulting in the longest epics, longest Constitution and judgments which go into thousands of pages.

British introduced a system of justice, which was based on verbal ability to talk and convince which matched with the normal talent. Indians thrived on it and produced eminent lawyers like - Gandhi, Nehru, Jinnah and others, who spearheaded the freedom struggle and fought with the best arguments. Legal practice earned a good name and earned a lot of money. The best students usually went to study law and were respected.

But post independence things began to change, industrialization set in and more people were drawn to other fields like- arts (Government jobs in a socialist economy) and later changed to other fields like- engineering and medicine. Legal profession lost out and it turned out that people who were not able to secure admissions in the first three fields, took this route. Legal Profession lost out. India produced good engineers, but not the pioneers in the field like it once did in Legal Field.

Today the Indian Judiciary is considered largely corrupt, slow and inefficient. The lawyers are seen as note-sucking monsters, who kill justice. They are themselves lawless citizens, extorting money from clients, spreading false rumours and thriving on fear and misinformation. There are over three crore cases and pending in different courts in India, thousands of lower court judge’s posts are vacant; over 144 High Court Judges posts are vacant. There is insufficient legal infrastructure and too many obsolete laws.

On an average there are 300 murders in a year in Delhi State, while the Criminal Courts can handle only 225 cases in a year, resulting in a backlog of 75 cases every year. To register ones statement, a witness has to visit the courts, several times due to adjournments. He faces threat and intimidation. Unless he has a missionary zeal to pursue the matter, he would soon lose interest in the court proceedings. Today the situation is so bad that people desist from approaching the courts for justice. Justice is slowly dying in our country. We could have the world’s best courts and most efficient justice, but we do not since, we are responsible for failure of the system.

The “declaration of guilt” by the Special Court to Ajmal Amair Kasab, has been hailed as a victory of justice in our country. He has been charged with the murder of seven persons and having common intent with the death of several others, conspiracy and waging a war against India. The charges levied and proved against him; show the archaic nature of the laws in India. Kasab was born to a poor family and basically a foot-soldier for LeT. Anyone aware of military strategies would know that soldiers only carry out commands and are not involved in drawing up a strategy; hence he didn’t strategize and conspire against India. If Pakistan Attacks India and we arrest a hundred Pakistani soldiers would each one of them be accused of waging a War against India, or would the Government of Pakistan face the charge. Hence, waging a war against India should be against LeT Commanders and not against their foot soldiers.  

If you have ever attended court, you would know that for murder to be proved, intention is of paramount importance. If you randomly shoot a person on the road, in most cases murder would not be proved. The Judiciary asks the Police to prove intent. The seven persons Ajmal is said to have murdered didn’t have any personal enmity against him. Tukaram Omle had held him; hence Ajmal could say that he killed him in self defense. None of the people who were shot in short range survived, and he was spraying bullets, hence there is no way, any witness would have dared to poke head out to see him. They know that there was someone who was killed many people and Police did catch hold of him, but they certainly couldn’t be sure. I don’t say that he is innocent; I only say that the laws in India are archaic. Ajmal Kasab should have been declared guilty for mass murder and terrorism. The court shouldn’t waste time in proving that he killed each person individually. We have POTA and other Anti Terrorism Laws which can harass people than actually be used to punish the guilty. We hence need a complete review of the laws of country. There are too many loopholes, which must be fixed.

The Kasab case had daily trial and hence a verdict could be declared in 18 months. But if it went to a normal court, the trial would have taken at least 18 years, assuming the judge keeps one hearing a month. The conviction rate in India in criminal cases is only 13.1%. There are thousands of undertrials who spend years in jail and may finally be termed as innocent.

‘Your Honour’ is no longer honorable, with Judicial Corruption being rampant. I know Public Prosecutors who have taken money to close the best investigated cases and judges who would take a few thousands to give a favourable verdict, disregarding the evidence produced before him. We all have seen and felt the rot in the judiciary and we have pointed fingers too. But, this is our country and we have to cleanse the rot and not leave it as we would suffer in the future.

There needs to be a complete review of the Laws of all kinds, they should be simplified. There are too many bans and curtails on citizen freedom, which should be removed. The laws be stated in simple words and should be provided online or in simple booklets for all persons, to avoid harassment by the lawyers. This legal review should not be done only by a panel of jurists, but also should include people who have been on the receiving end of the judiciary- criminals, common citizens, lawyers, Law Enforcement Agents and Jurists.

There should be a method to review the judicial decisions at the next higher courts. There should be a panel which would go through the trial details, which is well-documented before accepting the appeal. There should be an extent till which a case can be appealed. Cycle theft cases have reached the Supreme Court. These cases just clog the judicial process.

The method of appointment of Judges to High Court and Supreme Court should be altered. There should be a panel of five retired Chief Justices of India. When a Chief Justice retires he joins the panel and the oldest amongst them leaves the panel. They must review the work of each judge continuously. They should have an Intelligence Wing & Investigation Wing under them to probe on the conduct of Judges. They should be vested with powers to remove Judges. Only the removal of Chief Justice of India should be by impeachment.

The Bar Associations have become Unions harassing clients and there are internal agreements between lawyers. Bar Associations should be done away with, giving independence for lawyers to practice in any court in India. This would allow free market competition, bringing down cost of justice and make judiciary more accessible to the people. Like doctors who can lose their practioner certificate, lawyers should lose their right to fight cases if they cheat their customers.

The Union Law Minister recently declared that in over 75% of the cases, the Government is fighting its own citizens. Many of them are legal entangles are because of numerous laws and hence a review of the cases must be carried to relieve the citizens from fighting long legal battles with their own Government. In Criminal Cases the District Superintendent of Police and the Public Prosecutor must be made responsible about the people they file charge-sheet against. There should be punishment for filing false cases. At the state-level DGP and the Advocate General should be responsible. If the higher Court changes the verdict of the lower court, the judicial panel must look into the matter.

We enshrined in our constitution’s preamble that India would secure to all its citizens amongst others things- Justice. Today Judiciary has become a monster and citizens of India suffer as a result. One is scared to speak out against it as anything is seen as an insult to the judiciary. If one loves India, he would raise voice against everything which is not right in this country and earnestly try to change it. One should not bowed down and stand up for what we believe in. We are genetically made in a manner, that we can have the best Legal System in the world.

READ 'EXCLUSIVE ARCHIVES'
Comments on this article
Simon M A, MangaloreSunday, July 10, 2011
Hai Auysh go ahead and forget about America and all you go with your own theory.ok. most our people are blind  all the best.
Comment on this message     

clare, bangaloreWednesday, May 26, 2010

Hey ayush.
first of all, thank u for such an eye-opener.
nice work. i dont know much about any hi-profile marxist theories and democracy mechanisms. i am just an ordinary indian student with dreams to see my country do well.for me your article was very inspiring and i believe if such opinion pieces are at easy reach for the masses,we can slowly work changes into our system.we are the system...n we are ressponsible for its functioning.all we need at present is determination and courage, support from others having the same frquency of thought..and i am sure the wheels will start turning some day.

About the kasab issue,thnx for bringing it out so clearly.i myself was greatly discomforted at the "full-stop"at kasabs verdict...we r just trimming the edges.the problem lies at the route. i mean we still have a long way to go.
the indian judiciary is our judicial sytem.we got to clean our houses ourselves.if we have a problem with it,we must confront it.i'd say mass publishing of such articles and using them as a platforrm of debate and discussion and then working on the end notes...dis sshould be our strategy. y give up hope? i know it has become great mire to stick your toe into, but it is better 'late' than 'never'.
i would also like to express my gratitude to daijiworld media. please keep up the good work.

Comment on this message     

Arem, IndiaThursday, May 20, 2010
Excellent Article. India needs speedy justice, reviving faith in Judiciary which can be done by simplification of law, an understanding judge, who can cut off unnecessary delay and interference or prolongation.
Comment on this message     

NAZMATHNISA LAIZ, SURATHKAL/ABUDHABIThursday, May 20, 2010
All the best.
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Amit.s, HubliWednesday, May 19, 2010
No matter what ever u try to say no matter how much make people understand,put this article in news paper nothin's going to change beacause everybody a busy & selfish in their own lives,people dont care about where our country is heading through, ask a question to most of youngster where he wants to be in future his answer would be "i want to get setelled in foreign country" if all of us think like this what wouuld be our India's future. its obivios because the person who is having good talents & good knowledge do not get a chance to move foward, thats the reason why most of our outstanding engineer's work for microsoft & uk and us companies, nothing is goin goin to happen till there is a change till we all get up and try to make a change by ing good leaders,thanks to our indian politics and corruption,this change will never come
Comment on this message     

Raunak, BangaloreMonday, May 17, 2010
Excellent article....Hope u use your creativity positively like u did here...lol...I must admit it was an awesome article.....
Comment on this message     

Ranjana Nath, chicagoMonday, May 17, 2010
I am impressed by the clarity of this article.It should be published in all the newspapers and magazines so that people in India understand the loopholes in our Indian Legal System and make the required changes.I believe, any approach should result in a transparent process that gives confidence to a common person seeking justice through the Legal System
Comment on this message     

Neelesh, Sunday, May 16, 2010
Fantastic piece.
Let me steal your thunder for a second.

The dichotomy between private and public law is very interesting because it is the only service that a free market anarchist society cannot intuitively provide (don't get me wrong it can and will - but the base for such a market construct is difficult for most to imagine). However, by the Fabian-Marxist tradition (a tradition that, as you noted, seems to hold strongly with the bureaucratic empire of Indian government), this is at odds with the "logical" progression of government.

Your suggestions remedy a problem that has spread through the intellectual circles of centralizing nations (of which India seems to occupy a nice high place) the question of how to "live out" law in a genuine sense. We can see a rather clear example in that of water property rights. From your description of Indian law (and I won't pretend to be any expert), it seems that a best case scenario for these property rights would be bulky at best and constructionally variable at worst.

Let's assume that water property rights are bulky the lack of empowerment of the owners of this specific property will find the cost for maintaining it is often not worth the legal inability to defend it nor is the lack of compatibility by a slow moving set of laws, unable to specialize themselves the genuinely warranted and relevant quarrels being brought forth.

This unfortunate scenario is in addition to what seems to be the lack of genuine legal precedent
Comment on this message     

Ayush Prasad, BangaloreSaturday, May 15, 2010
Thank you all for your encouragement. I do not plan to make journalism a full time profession. Writing is my hobby, I write when I feel like and choose to research my own topic. Making it a profession would mean meeting deadlines and feeding the demand.

MIT has improved tremedously as an institution. It certainly is the best in the state, performing consistently well in all defining factors. People do indulge in substance abuse-smoking, excessive drinking etc but all are adults and its their personal choice.

In a democracy it is not only our right but also our duty to acknowledge what is wrong and then work on improving it. It is our country, we would have to improve things ourselves.

People do fear speaking against the system, but I have double checked, making sense with all the complicated laws, being critical about the system doesn't amount to insulting it.

I believe that Kasab is guilty and should be hanged, but we must not lose foucs on getting the commanders- Saeed and Laqvi to justice. We cant celebrate over Kasab so much.

This article is in "Exlusive" Section of Daijiworld and would only be published in Daijiworld Media or with the permission of the Editors elsewhere.

I hope the Editorial Team can get the article and the views of the readers acorss to Law Minister Moily. Thankyou for your support and appreciation.
Comment on this message     

Wolly James, Mangalore/GermanySaturday, May 15, 2010
Dear Ayush,
It is not only a great article but a brave one. To openly criticise our juridictory system deserves my hat off. Thank you and keep it up.
I am with you for any assistance
Wollyjames@yahoo.co.in
Comment on this message     

Ron, IndiaSaturday, May 15, 2010

Well you sound quite intelligent & investigative in your own simple way. What one needs to realize is the perpetrators of crime coming from certain country appears is not originated from there at all. It is probably from out side, India has several enemies for no genuine reason unfortubately linked by a global common cause & agenda to perpetrators. However, if 9/11 could not have punished and found perpetrators do you think 26/11 will reach its goal.

I doubt. I wonder why there was not a single major incidence past 9 years. Dont you think some one does knows something & has warned not to repeat. Now does India know the same link & method. Can India dare to act against perpetrators if it identifies. I doubt it. The issue must be complicated for a Democracy to solve it. As the old saying goes, There are too many cooks in a democrecy which will spoil the soup eventually.

Comment on this message     

santa lopes, Lower Kasarkod.Saturday, May 15, 2010
Congrats for your beautiful and intelligible article on ‘legality’. While speaking skillfully on the concept of justice and the responsibility you have highlighted that “we are responsible for the failure of the system”, which means the act of each person is the cause of the failure of the legal system. If so than Ajmal Amair Kasab is dually responsible for his act and one cannot justify telling that “he was born to a poor family and basically a foot-soldier for LeT”. Let each one us be responsible to one's own acts, for man is born free and responsible!
Comment on this message     

Naveen Sequeira, MangaloreSaturday, May 15, 2010
Ayush Prasad,
Very good article, it provides a vision for our great nation. When the law of the land (not the broken law that we have) rules, we all will benifit and we can be a super power.
Well done, keep up the good work.
Comment on this message     

Langoolacharya, Belman/USASaturday, May 15, 2010
Hi Ayush,

Excellent article well written subject wise and presentation wise too, i believe you have excellent comamand over subject and language in which it is written with....

Well i am happy to note that you are presently a student of MIT, i was a student there before three decades....., when i was there there were only 6 blocks in hostel in addition to K&D.....I am sure it has expanded much now....

Well how are students behaving now? Do they still smoke(?) during night???

All the best Ayush keep it up, try GRE and do masters in US...

Good luck and Jai hoooooooooooooo
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Nilabh , bangalore Saturday, May 15, 2010
Well written , Couldn't agree more .Its high time the Indian Judiciary needs some serious reviewing and resurrection . Also i liked the fact that you made a referral to the Kasab case to explain the situation which was very gutsy and is indeed commendable. Keep up the good work .
Comment on this message     

Anil, Mangalore/PuneSaturday, May 15, 2010
Good Article... I too have similar views on Indian judiciary system. All things will happen good If and only if "Old makes way for new." that is stricter retirement age for politicians.
Comment on this message     

Edward D Souza, MangaloreSaturday, May 15, 2010
This is an eye opener about Indian Judiciary in our time.Well narrated Ayush, keep up the good work.The mockery of judiciary in our state itself is Lokayuctha cases? what punishment is given to the culprits?
Let us hope and pray for a revolution in Indian Judiciary system for more and more fast track courts,more and more honest lawyers and judges to keep up the law of the country.
Comment on this message     

SHAILESH FERNANDES, MANGALORESaturday, May 15, 2010
Indeed a good article, well written & covered most of the loop holes in the current legal system of our country. Keep up the good work Ayush.
Comment on this message     

MATILDA, M'LORE / K.S.A.Saturday, May 15, 2010
GOOD ARTICLE. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK.
Comment on this message     

R.T.Shetty, Doha/KundapurSaturday, May 15, 2010
Dear Ayuesh,
Excellent article.Todays seed is tomrrows plant. sure like you there may be many young generation people thinking in similiar way. The current situation wont last long. Even if it lasts then it will chaos soon and the change /revolution will come automatically.

Goodluck. Keep writing
Comment on this message     

Hanik, MangaloreSaturday, May 15, 2010
A hundred vibrant & applicable laws are far better than thousands of useless dud laws. In this market economy, anything can be purchased at open market, even the most respected, unbiased His Honours.
Comment on this message     

Mohammad M.B., Uppinangady, DubaiFriday, May 14, 2010
Good article. Legal systems are large and have many dimensions. As a Engineering background, beatifully written on various aspects of complex indian legal system with a rational approach. Excellent. All the best Ayush and keep up the good work. God bless you.
Comment on this message     

riyaz ahmed, BANGALOREFriday, May 14, 2010
BEST OF LUCK,GOOD MAN JUST LIKE THAT HAVE A GOOD FUTURE IN LIFE
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adshenoy, mangloorFriday, May 14, 2010
Expressive and Intelligent and thinking beyond the surface, Ayush.
Brilliant indeed.
Modern society, modern legal system and modern politics are mind boggling. Most of the time justice to one is delivered with injustice to another.
Keep up the writings of these intellectual calibre.
We can change India with these thoughts with young minds like you.
Comment on this message     

Deena , mangaloreFriday, May 14, 2010
I think this is one of the best article I have read in daijiworld.
Comment on this message     

Theo D'Silva, Kadri/Mangalore/TorontoFriday, May 14, 2010
Dear Ayush,
Its an excellent article regarding Juridiction, corrupt lawyers and the power of Money. The Money/Might power was always a historical player in Universe. Socialism with democratic priciples is the only way future of India. So, we need leaders like you. thanks, Theo
Comment on this message     

A.S.Mathew, U.S.A.Friday, May 14, 2010
It is a very commendable article, touching various factors of the complex Indian society in a
rational and critical approach.

Be it religion or politics, age old traditions have a great hold in the Indian way of life, and it
is practically very hard to change.

You have a great talent in writing, and I strongly recommend you to make a detour in journalism, and
you will be greatly successful.  Wish you all the best.
Comment on this message     

Vivek Dsouza, NeelavarFriday, May 14, 2010
Excellent write up, Mind provoking thought, Keep writing like these articles, some day it will alert concern individuals. Intellectuals thinking in this way will make some difference. You have tickled few good areas, where no one is bothers to look into.
Comment on this message     

Ronald, MangaloreFriday, May 14, 2010
Knowledge is power. You seem to have very good knowledge. Good luck to you.
Comment on this message     

Diana Saldanha, CanadaFriday, May 14, 2010
Well documented and presented. Made very interesting read, Ayush. Keep up the good work!
Comment on this message     

Shammi Narang, MangaloreFriday, May 14, 2010
Ayush, good article, worth reading as someone said. AT this young age, it is good to see intelectual article from you. I wish many youngsters come forward to write such articles...all the best Ayush
Comment on this message     

florine, mangalore/mumbaiFriday, May 14, 2010
Mr Prasad your article is really worth reading.
Hope our officials in judiciary and corrupt politicians go through it carefully and amend their ways of functioning officially for the benefit of peace loving people of this country and to give a clean chit on their performance.
Comment on this message     

AjitKudroli, MangaloreFriday, May 14, 2010
Excellent article Mr. Prasad, wish Daijiworld keep this thought provoking and perfect analytical article in the front page at least for a year.
The world of difference I found between Americans and indians is simply put - Americans care and we don’t care. Be it country, environment, road manners, God (Whether you are beliver or Atheist) It is always you first and in India it is I first. (example a motorist starts from home at 20 kmp and proceeds to enter the highway without scant respect to the vehicles running in high way and continue with his 20kmp speed. But he is careful enough to measure the size and speed of the vehicle at the highway lest it should not pulverize him).
I have a suggestion the menace of rotten corruption can be controlled if the giver is exempted from punishments and interrogation and only the receiver gets harsh punishment for a period of 2 years at least, India will be a much better place.There will be more complaints by the giver and the receiver will always be under damocles sword. No amount of education will prevent it. Haven’t we allowed black money to be converted to white in the past.
Comment on this message     

Ruben, MangaloreFriday, May 14, 2010
This is a great piece of info & very well written. Dear Ayush, pls also send this article to all major publications / newspapers so that your message reaches the masses of population.
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