Western researchers have eventually come round to the traditional Indian view that crime is not a consequence of damaged people, i.e., the people who have been harmed or deprived under the existing social system, but some people are inertly wicked and selfish. Therefore, in the opinion of James Q Wilson, a noted researcher on crime, ?Nothing avails except to set them apart from innocent people? (Thinking about Crime, p. 235). Approximately five millenniums ago, Sri Krishna had revealed the same truth to Arjuna on the battlefield of Kurukshetra, that in this world there were two kinds of beings, the divine and the demonical (refer Verse 6, Chap 16, Bhagavadgita). And Sri Krishna further revealed that for the protection of the pious and destruction of the evil-doers He manifested himself in every age (Verse 8, Chapter 4).
One important lesson of Indian tradition handed down to posterity through various forms of worship, including the worship of the Mahishamardini (the Destroyer of the buffalo-demon) or the Goddess Durga, is to restrain one'sego and to contain arrogance. The unrestrained ego has been verily described as demonic in the 16th Chapter of the Bhagavadgita. Some of the demonic qualities enumerated therein are insatiable passion filled with vanity, pride, arrogance, impure resolves and the lust for power and supremacy. The worst crimes against humanity were and are still being committed by the men possessed of those demonic qualities. According to National Crime Records Bureau, a woman is raped in every 30 minutes in India, and a person is killed in every 75 minutes by domestic violence. The current ratio of acquittal at 1: 0.6 is a testimony of the failure not only of the Government but also of the social system that are apparently helpless against the Mahishasurs of today'sIndia.
It is a fact that egoistic persons are usually powerful owing to their affluence or social status, even though all powerful persons are not necessarily egoistic. Like in ancient time gods were known to have reined in their ego while the demons had let it loose, we find a replication of that in our time as well. In India the following three categories of people can be classified as powerful: the politicians, the rich and the bureaucrats. The majority of the above three classes are egoistic and self-indulgent for want of spiritual upbringing or inclination. Their intense desire for riches, fame and power at the expense of the people has led to the erosion of social values.
What applies to individuals at a micro level does also apply to a country on a larger canvas. When a country is possessed of demonic impulses, crime against humanity assumes a much larger dimension, like what the world had seen in Hitler'sNazism. Ongoing Pak-sponsored terrorism on Indian soil, such as the Mumbai blast of March, 1993 and 7/11 train serial blasts in the same metropolis are just a few instances of crime against humanity committed by a country out of a demonic design.
No state capital in India has proved to be more helpless in the face of organised crime of the mafia than Mumbai. From the time of Varadharaj Mudaliar in the early 60?s, followed by Haji Mastan, Yusuf Patel and Karim Lala down to the present hegemony of Dawood Ibrahim, Chhota Rajan and Chhota Shakeel, the mafia have been calling the shots in India'scommercial capital. Pak-based terrorist groups like Lashkar-e-Toiba, Jaish-e-Mohammed, Harakat-ul-Mujahidin have only added a new dimension to the already existing Mafia Raj steering all crimes, viz. drug peddling, kidnapping, murder, et al. The close nexus between some politically influential, self-aggrandising men of power with the mafia bosses is the primary reason why the crime graph in Mumbai is always on the rise.
While other states have been able to largely control and contain local hoodlums, the threat of Mumbai mafia gangs expanding their tentacles in tandem with Pak-based terrorist outfits to other metros like Delhi, Kolkata and Bangalore is staring in our face. It is time to strike at the root of the problem before it is late.
The question is how to strike at the root of the problem. According to the Control Theory propounded by western researchers like James Q Wilson, there are three fundamental approaches to crime reduction. These are deterrence, discouragement and removing excuses. In the 70'sand the 80?s, being the period of prosperity, America and Europe experimented with the reform approach stressing more on understanding the criminal rather than preventing the crime. The above approach evidently failed as the recorded crime in both the continents increased phenomenally. As for instance, the number of recorded crime grew in the UK from 1.6 million in 1970 to 5.4 million in 1992. In the mid 90?s, the criminal justice system in America and England was rendered more stringent in pursuance of the Control Theory. This resulted in considerable rise in imprisonment and reduction in the crime rate. Post 9/11 America and Europe have further strengthened their criminal laws.
In India, the major problem lies in how to remove excuses for every crime committed; inasmuch excuses dilute resolve of the people to tackle crime. If it is terrorist strike, the excuse is Kashmir. If it is Naxalite mayhem, the excuse is social exploitation. If it is attack on a leader, the excuse is political rivalry. If it is murder of the likes of Jessica Lal, Meher Bhargava and Priydarshini Mattoo, the excuse is lack of proper upbringing of the murderous youth. If there is police inaction or Government inertness, the excuses are political pressure or compulsion of coalition politics. It is time for the nation to change its psyche of acceptance and to call for a tougher administration of criminal justice.
It is only collective determination of the people that works as the most effective antidote to crime. The spiritual tradition of India teaches us to accept life and destiny but not the crime against humanity. Even God does not pardon it.