NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday termed the recent incidents of lynching as horrendous and acts of mobocracy, and recommended that Parliament enact a law to punish offenders in such cases. Incidents like these may rise across the country, as a Typhon-like monster, if not dealt with sternly now, the court warned.
“When any core group with some kind of idea takes the law into its own hands, it ushers in anarchy, chaos, disorder and, eventually, there is an emergence of a violent society,” a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice
Dipak Misra observed while hearing petitions by social activist Tehseen Poonawalla and Tushar Gandhi, great-grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, seeking to check violence by cow vigilante groups.
Directing the Centre and states to take preventive, punitive and remedial measures to stop lynching incidents, it said, “Crime knows no religion and neither the perpetrator nor the victim can be viewed through the lens of race, caste, class or religion. The court sought compliance reports from the Centre and states in four weeks, and slated the hearing for August 20.
“State has the primary responsibility to foster a secular, pluralistic and multi-cultural social order so as to allow free play of ideas and beliefs and co-existence of mutually contradictory perspectives,” the bench added and observed that hate crimes must be nipped in the bud, before they result in a reign of terror.
Coming down hard on lynching offenders, the bench said, “There can be no justification for anyone to take law into his own hands, and once they opt to assume the role of protectors, they are nothing but criminals.”