MY OPINION – Law must enhance road safety, not revenue

No one can dispute the good intent behind the new Road Transport and Safety Bill, 2014 in place of the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988. There is a lot of emphasis on improving road-user behaviour through enhanced penalties and strict licensing. Among other provisions, the bill envisages to increase penalties by 10-50 times. Such changes are ...

MY OPINION – Should juveniles go scot-free?

While the nation rejoiced over speedy trials and exemplary punishment in the Nirbhaya and Shakti Mills cases, some managed to evade the reach of law because they were juveniles. The policy on juveniles is caught between rehabilitation and get-tough approach. It’s worthwhile to learn from the evolution of policy towards juvenile offenders in the United ...

MY OPINION ‘It’s high time we had tougher road-safety laws’ 1

Gopinath Munde joins the long list of politicians like Saheb Singh Verma, Rajesh Pilot and Gyani Zail Singh who lost their lives due to road ac cidents.The lives of one lakh and thirty thousand Indians are cut short every year due to circumstances that are totally avoidable. Fatalities on roads keep rising unabated without any ...

Quick punishment, not guns, can ensure safety 4

   Achurch is attacked and the most obvious response is to deploy policemen at all churches. Some miscreants desecrate a temple idol and there is demand for giving police protection to all temples. Vandals target hospitals, ATMs, hotels and the knee-jerk reaction is to ask for deployment of police there too. There is a rape in ...

Quick probe, conviction can deter sexual crimes

Another rape and another round of national uproar! This time in Mumbai. In a country where a woman is raped every 20 minutes, such outrage is a welcome sign. Public anger makes all women feel vulnerable and all men ashamed. But we must accept the enemy lies somewhere “among us” and not “out there” — ...

Police need empathy and support, not condemnation 3

Policemen get lynched by crowds while handling disturbances, killed by Naxals, run over by motorists while jumping signals or beaten up by people when flagged down for drunken driving or overspeeding. Rarely does civil society raise its voice when policemen are beaten up or killedby our own citizens.Asociety where policemen beat up its citizens cannot ...

Alcometer test is never humiliating 3

Amidnight SMS from a well-known woman, who works for a prestigious airline, left me totally confused. She wrote, “I was driving at midnight when traffic cops flagged me down and insisted on a breath-analyzer test. All this despite knowing pretty well that a lady was behind the wheel. When I protested, they requested me to ...

Policemen deserve healthy work-life balance too 5

Published : Times of India The recent shooting of a sub-inspector by his subordinate once again points towards the deep malaise that’s afflicting the police system in this country.Whatever police reforms have happened,have centered around senior levels of the police force.The middle levels have remained largely untouched.A series of suggestions about adverse living and working conditions ...

Punishment can be catalyst for change 1

Published : Times of India The past week has seen an upsurge of anger over one of the most ghastly rape cases in the recent past in this country.News channels competed with each other in police bashing and offering quick-fix solutions ranging from death sentence to chemical castration.Whereas anger is fully justified and essential to ...

Disciplining auto drivers needs a paradigm shift

Published : DNA One feature that has united the country with its consistency is atrocious behaviour of autorickshaw drivers. It has tormented senior citizens, working women, students and the middle-class over decades. Whether the experience in Bangalore is the worst is a matter of debate. The traffic police penalising autorickshaw drivers has not made any perceptible change ...