Leisure, Lifestyle & Wellness
The Legal System Is Like Evidence-based Medicine
“Human decency is not derived from religion. It precedes it.” — Christopher Hitchens 
 
I  was talking with the judges in service at the Karnataka Legal Academy. There were more than 200 of them. One of their own High Court colleagues had spoken to them just before my talk and they were all very keen to listen to some outsider who did not study jurisprudence! When I said that I am going to talk with them (not to them) about my concept of Humanism, some of them showed signs of unrest. From my understanding of the word, almost from the time of Comte, the French philosopher, it was meant to signify that anything that man does on this planet, ultimately, helps mankind. Comte did not invent the word as a neologism; he popularised it. Our understanding was that the talk would be interactive. The first question I asked them was if, in their opinion, the present adversarial system of justice, which we have blindly inherited from the British, serves the truth?  
 
We then went on to dissect the word truth into The Truth and A Truth at a given time. As Khalil Gibran had so beautifully described, ‘The Truth’ is something that is final and unchangeable; while ‘A Truth’ is what we all think is the truth, to the best of our ability, which, of course, changes from time to time. In the adversarial system, the judge is ONLY an umpire and has no freedom for her/his free will to act on his information even to the contrary. 
 
What then happens is that the so-called great lawyers charge exorbitant fees to distort the truth even when they know the truth from the culprit whom they represent willingly, under the protection of the infamous saying that any person is innocent until he is proven guilty. 
 
Now, see the catch in that statement! For argument’s sake, let us say that the judge knows, for sure, that the culprit is guilty of the offence. The judge will not be able to take a definite stand. He only has to weigh the EVIDENCE provided by both the sides. The judiciary, the cunning lawyers, the investigating officers and, in fact, the whole system banks on that clause, to the detriment of truth. 
 
That is exactly the reason why the rich and the powerful have one kind of justice and the hapless poor another kind. Even the man-on-the-street knows the crime that is perpetrated on the innocent people who today do not have a voice in our country, while the powerful perpetrators go scot-free.
 
This reminds me of evidence-based medicine. No one ever questions the basis, and the quality, of the evidence. The statistical evidence that we use in medicine is not ‘The Truth’. Statistics, thus, used in evidence-based medicine are also dangerous. A senior professor of epidemiology in Washington calls this ‘science without sense’ in his book by that title. He shows how statistical evidence could be collected to favour the industry, using the so-called randomised controlled studies, where they just show that one treatment would be better than either a placebo or better than another drug of their rivals.
 
The total immunity that the judges enjoy is also against the normal cannons of justice and is not in tune with the truth. Therefore, we must have tighter control in selection of judges. Let the collegium continue; but once the government gets the list from the collegiums, the list must be widely publicised so that the common man has a voice in their selection. If anyone has valid unimpeachable evidence against any one of them, that must be brought to the notice and thoroughly investigated before the final selection, so that the black sheep do not make a backdoor entry. A periodic review of the working of judges will also keep them alert all the time. The job they are entrusted with is a very serious one and they have to be completely authentic and trustworthy to command people’s respect—exactly what the doctors ought to be doing.

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COMMENTS

sriram

2 months ago

Crpc makes Complainant and accused to take of Witnesses so that False Persons do not come in place of actual Witness, Forcing Accused to be Present on all Adjournments days. More Sec. 205 Exemption gets defeated if Neither Police nor Judiciary shelves Responsibility of getting Actual Witness Persons Statements Recorded .Both are Paid from Publi Taxes only , but do not Bother to Comfort Public . As Aadhar card is Standardised for all Schemes Suppport , Courts and Police may also Collect Copy of Each Witness Aadhar card , so False Persons Witness Menace can be Curbed.

BMC gets over 70,000 complaints against illegal construction on its 1916 number
The Municipal Corporation of Greater Mumbai (MCGM) or BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) had received almost 21% complaints on its complaint number 1916 over the past 33 months, reveals a reply received under the Right to Information (RTI) Act.
 
RTI Activist Anil Galgali had filed the application seeking details of complaints received on the dedicated telephone number. As per the information provided by the BMC Disaster Management Cell to Galgali, out of the total complaints of 3.40 lakh, about 21% or 70,143 are about illegal construction activities from across the city. Out of the total complaints received by BMC, over 3 lakh were sorted out and around 36,647 complaints are still shown as pending, as per the RTI reply.
 
In 2014, total 1.57 lakh complaints were registered by citizens. Out of these 18,578 are still shown 'pending' in the BMC records. Next year, the number of complaints came down to 1.17 lakh, out of which 2,909 are still pending. The trend has not changed and the number of complaints is likely to register a substantial fall this year too, Galgali says. 
 
Of the complaints received, Govandi M East with 17,391 calls has registered the highest number of complaints regarding Maintenance department. This is followed by Chembur M West (13,733) and Kurla L Ward (10,697). 
 
In Building and Factory department complaints, Kurla L Ward takes the lead with 15,845 complaints and is followed by Govandi M East (9,457) and Chembur M West (8,068), the RTI reply reveals.
 
Galgali, in a letter to BMC Commissioner Ajoy Mehta has asked the Corporation to start declaring a 'worst ward award' on monthly basis as well as shame non-performing officers who are not resolving grievances of citizens. Most complaints are pertaining at ward level in the Building and Factory department as BMC officers deliberately ignore the complaints, Galgali alleged.

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COMMENTS

shadi katyal

2 months ago

This is not the only city where such illgal construction is gopiong on. It is in our blood to encroach as we have no respect for others and the Law. Recent falling of few building s has no effect on the building contractors as who is going to look if we build 6 stores with permission of 3. When inspevtor comes pay hinm his right prive and continue to make money. If few people die so what it is their Karama.
Look around anywhere in Indis whether it is a small shiopkeeper who has encorached on the street to display his product or a builder.
There are now Laws which cannot be bought in India and even justices.
Mera Hindustan Buddra Mahan aur sub se budda baiman

Criminologist demands action against phone search engines
Virtual property or website owners like that of phone search engines should be prosecuted for passing on user information to criminals and allowing use of their platform for organised crimes, demands a criminologist.
 
In a release, Criminologist Snehil Dhall, says, "As per current criminal laws, if any criminal activity is committed by the tenant or employee then even the landlord or owner of that physical property is prosecuted, since it is assumed that the platform was catered to the criminal by the landlord. The property owner is prosecuted even if he or she is not part of the crime or was not aware of any procedures of allocating the space whatsoever. The same is not applicable of virtual property or 'platforms owners' i.e. Just Dial, Ask me and other such phone search engine, which carries similar documentations as compared to the ones used between tenant-landlord. Maximum numbers of organized crime are committed by using such phone, website, social media platforms and should be prosecuted in the similar manner or the laws should be revoked for the tenant-landlord responsibilities as well."
 
As per the statement, it is very easy for any white-collared professional to operate from different jurisdictions and escape, since companies like Just Dial register such criminals from various locations and it is impossible to trace them. It says, "The personal details are forwarded to professional criminals without the permission of the caller since the Just Dial takes huge amount of registration fees from companies to provide intellectual property of the caller. The situation against the web search engines is comparatively much better since the details of individual searchers do not go to the company at all; but with phone search engines the callers personal details are misused for various purposes." 
 
The 'space' in cyberspace refers to certain internet resources, like uniform resource locator (URL), domain names, email accounts, virtual worlds, and more. The term cyberspace is used as an analogy, since most online resources mimic physical properties. For instance, a chat room is, in many ways, similar to a conference room; a URL is similar to real estate in the real world and any account holder with such space either on phone or web are similar to tenants and landlords. The research on various criminal offensives was verified on virtual platforms like Just Dial - a phone search engine due to which the organised crime has been identified. The evidence and witness are recognised public information and can be verified by anyone by just calling these phone search engines, Dhall added.
 
"Criminal clearance certificate and government registration should be taken for every company registered with such platforms since these companies further sell the database for either professional or criminal activities. Effective verifications should be conducted by criminal justice system of all the account holders and the virtual property owners should be held responsible for allowing criminal activities that are conducted by using their platforms. In addition, all investors, banks and shareholders should refrain their funding to such companies till the verification of all their account holders are justified and a monitoring system has been placed by these companies to verify criminal activities carried out on their virtual platforms," the release said.
 

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COMMENTS

saravanan ramamoorthy

2 months ago

This is a point blank shot on Govt's desktop. Govt has to respond to this, if it's serious about citizen's security first and privacy next.
Saravanan, Asst.Commissioner Retd. Customs & Excise GST.

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