They beat him up. According to the MidDay report of June 1, “after a thorough beating,” they handed him over to the police in Mumbai.
He was just 10 years old. A mere child who snatched a purse worth about Rs 50 and which had Rs 20 in cash.
Justice was served and how! The police registered a case of robbery against both of them. The passersby not only beat up the child, but they beat up an adult they suspected was an accomplice. They beat up the suspected accomplice so mercilessly that the man is unconscious and his identity is unknown.
Swift merciless justice was meted out by a bunch of average citizens of Mumbai for a petty crime. Was the man really guilty and if so, of what? Does a 10-year old child deserve mercy and compassion? I don’t suppose the upright citizens of Mumbai who beat up the child had time to ponder these questions.
They beat up a child, a 10 year old child, for snatching a purse. Then they handed the child over to the police. Did the police register a case of deadly assault against those passersby who beat up the child? No. The police registered a case of robbery.
The people who beat up the child are powerless. They had to find someone weaker than themselves to vent their rage upon. They would not be able to lift a finger against others who are more powerful but who steal not Rs 20 but millions of times more. The bigger criminals go about with red lights flashing on top of their speeding cars. Those “alert Mumbaikars”, as the MidDay reporter calls them, would shit in their pants if asked to mete out justice to the real criminals.
They beat up that little innocent child and handed him over to the police. The police threw the child in a children’s remand home — for attempting to steal a few rupees. In the meanwhile, Telgi, the criminal who stole hundreds of millions of rupees, is being given extra-ordinary medical care in prison because apparently he suffers from depression which, according to a Times of India report, is due to “too much thinking.”
They beat up a child because they cannot beat up the crooked politicians. Career criminals–some of them charged with murder, rape, and abduction–call the legislative bodies of India their home. Reports surface every now and then about how a significant number of the members of Parliament have criminal cases pending against them.
A bunch of adults ganged up against a child, who for some unknown reason snatched a purse with small change in it, and beat up a little child. Ganging up against an adult is bad enough but to beat up a child is unforgivable. The lack of humanity is stunning. Where is the outrage at this criminal act? Should the police officer who registered a case of robbery be charged with dereliction of duty for not charging the people who beat up the child?
They beat up the child because they don’t value children. They don’t value children because there are too many of them. You cannot stop at a traffic light in Mumbai without being faced with children begging for a few rupees. To those who beat up the child, these are mere nuisances and not human beings. Beating up a child is just another aspect of the dehumanization that results in neglected, uneducated, under-nourished, unwanted children.
I read a lot of press about how India is a fast developing (and according to some how India is already a developed) economy. Projections of how many cell phones and how many computers per capita India will have by such and such a year fill glossy magazines and engage scores of management gurus. I know a little secret: cell phones and computers will not make caring humans out of mindless morons.
“Ill fares the land, to hastening ills a prey, where wealth accumulates and men decay.” Thus wrote Oliver Goldsmith.
Now if you will excuse me, I would like to go and throw up from the disgust I feel at the zero degrees of humanity displayed by the “alert Mumbaikars.”
From the archives: India’s Real Criminals.