Hyderabad: Mahaparinirvan Diwas, the death anniversary of Bharata Ratna BR Ambedkar, the builder of the rule of law of the young nation India, passed on with Telangana police making headlines at the national level. The latter made sensational news by killing four accused in the gang rape of Disha, Hyderabad veterinarian, today. Cyberabad Police Commissioner told media that they reached the crime spot at the early hours (December 6, 2019) for crime scene reconstruction. During which the accused suddenly snatched weapons from the officials and started firing. The police returned fire that resulted in the death of the four accused on the spot.

The same story is repeatedly told by police to justify their fake encounter. Perhaps, officials have repeated the account a hundred times — accused were taken to the crime spot, they suddenly snatched weapons, started firing, and in self-defence, the police were compelled to kill them. In Warangal, the accused in an acid attack of two young girls were killed in a similar encounter with an indistinguishably unbelievable narration of self-defence. The same was repeated without any hesitation.

When such an incident happened in the past, police should have gained experience. While accused were taken to the crime spot, they should have acted cautiously, called for TV channels for a live telecast or had department video recording the incident.

Fast track court, faster execution!

In response to overwhelming protests, Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao ordered the institution of fast track court to try this case, which was approved by the High Court. It has become infructuous now. The police fooled the government and the judiciary, exhibited a contempt for the justice system, and donned the role of a jailer and executioner. 

In one stroke, the police have rendered constitutional government, law, courts, investigation and jails useless and irrelevant. If this is the case, do we need judges and prisons? Should we assume the consent of people to remove courts of law and prosecution to save crores of tax money? Then the question remains what will be the fate of hundreds of proceedings of rape cases in the state? Will the investigations and prosecutions go on? Should we kill all of them?

If this is justice — natural or constitutional — why have the Constitution of India or courts of justice? What we need, perhaps, is a police officer with a gun. Nobody should ask what definite proof you have to prove the crime against the four accused. What would be the case when one of the accused was later established not involved or implicated, or some other fellow was behind it?

Should anyone question using his/her right to know or express opinion under Article 19(1) (a) of Constitution of India? Is it true that the accused tried to escape from the custody while the police were doing a scene recreation? If that is true, should we assume that our police are weak, inefficient and disorganised? They failed to suspect that the accused could try to escape. Are we to believe that they were unprepared to face the attack from the accused while in custody? Are the accused so strong that they could snatch police weapons while in care?

In a democracy, the people are the real judges. However, it does not mean that executions can happen through mob lynching. In the criminal justice system, capital punishment is not abolished. It is legally possible to eliminate criminals like the accused in Disha or Nirbhaya cases.

Besides social media, politicians of various national and regional parties welcomed the encounter. Hyderabad, capital of Telangana, is agog with an appreciation for the Cyberabad (part of Hyderabad) Police. Twitter opinions were pouring in, more in favour of police action and Facebook users hailing instant justice with thousands of likes and emoticons. Twitter teachers praised Telangana rulers and police as heroes of the Indian justice system, which other states and nation should follow. Unfortunately, the majority of social media users accepted this illegal police action based on the untruthful statement. Some senior journalists, storywriters, artistes and so-called intellectuals on Facebook are positively moved by this action as if it was a new welfare scheme by the Telangana government — “Justice in ten days”. On this day, Dr Bhimrao Ambedkar died.

If this is the case, in every city the police commissioner should be given additional duties of the Chief Metropolitan Judge, to endorse evidence produced by TVs and social media, and direct an armed police officer to kill the accused in ‘encounter’. It is a trial by police with the help of sensational media and senseless social media based on emotions, not evidence. 

The sequence of events is baffling. A few individuals gang rape a hapless woman and a team of police officers kill the accused while they were in their custody. The criminals tell untrue statements to police officers and the latter lied to press and people.

The police showed their bravery and skill in killing those in custody, thus surpassed a Rajinikanth of celluloid world where only the hero can do a complete, meticulous justice through beating and killing. Meanwhile, the young and old, healthy and weak, watch the hero with admiration, while dozens of henchmen sacrifice their lives with a significant commitment to the cause.

Ambedkar probably couldn’t understand in the initial days of Constitution-making, around 70 years ago, that speedy justice is possible as proved by the Cyberabad police team. Otherwise, he would have incorporated it in the Constitution as the Rajinikanth clause!

M Sridhar Acharyulu

Madabhushi Sridhar Acharyulu was the Central Information Commissioner (2013-18) of Union of India, who delivered thousands of landmark judgments on Right to Information. Earlier, Madabhushi Sridhar served as Professor and Registrar at NALSAR University, Hyderabad . With double post-graduate degrees (LLM & MCJ) Ph.D. and LL.D., Sridhar continues as a columnist on socio-political happenings and policies of the state. He has written and published 40 books on Law and Journalism in both Telugu and English, 100 plus research articles and thousands of newspaper articles. Sridhar anchored a live phone-in TV weekly program to answer doubts on land records in 60 episodes of a TV channel in Hyderabad.

3 comments on "Encounter of four accused in the Hyderabad Disha case; police action fooled CM and Courts!"

  • Sir. Bold academics can be understood only by Sthitapragnyas. Sadly our politics and administration trained our people to decide in emotions, and to discriminate without reason. We are losing balance of minds and care of conscience.

  • Well said sir! What action will the government take on SHO or his men who ridiculed the girl’s parents by saying she might have gone with her boy friend,. And the policeman who tossed them from one PS to another without registering the fir? The RTO who allowed the lorry driver to go scot-free despite an expired DL… And RTO who left the vehicle without siezing it even though it was over loaded? The Government minister who has said she should have called 100 instead of her sister when confronted by media?

  • Sir, ur sarcastic questioning of the action of the police is noted. I understand that most of those who have supported the Cyberabad police action are fully aware of all these questions and do not need any “Gnanam”. It is clear from the reaction of the People from across the country that they want more such encounter killings by the police. It is clear indication that people have lost faith for the judicial system and developed hatred against. They want speedy justice and are not ready to tolerate the delay in rendering justice.and register their disgust against everybody who are against the needed changes in the judicial system. Why is not a single word spoken from the that be for bringing changes towards that end.
    Let it be clear and loud that the people of this country want such “encounter” killings more and more and the courts be closed as suggested by you since they have anyway become useless.
    It would have nice had people like you should have written on the judicial system losing its faith among the people of thus country because what u hv written is nothing and is known to everybody. People are even angry with intervention of the human rights commission also into the killing of the Disha tape accused and are questing the right of the Commission for the intervention. It makes it clear that they have developed distrust in all these bodies and the system itself.
    It is very easy to scribble something justifying the need for the rule of law but difficult to be so when it happens to our dear ones. We are living in a jungle of wicked and cruel animals and such is only way to deal with them.
    Let us do something to repair our judicial system for speedy rendering of justice instead of wasting time and energy on giving sermons. Everybody in the country is fully aware that it is fake encounter and the said accused have been murdered and yes, people want such instant and retributive justice. Let’s up wake up before people take law into their own hands and “adjudicate” the problems they face! Shame on our judiciary! Shame on our judges who talk great values and do nothing. If they hv conscience, they all the judges of Supreme Court enmass resign to force government to appoint sufficient number judges in various courts and increase the number of courts and judges!

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