Revenge or Justice?

“Justice is done” was the initial response of many Indians in the online and offline world, when the court verdict on Ajmal Kasab came out yesterday. I don’t understand what justice is being done here. Let me clarify – I am not talking about human rights and all that when it comes to Kasab. He deserves a severe punishment for the kind of crime he did. And a death row is definitely not a severe punishment for Kasab, because we are ending up doing LeT’s job for them. Kasab came here to kill as many people as he could and also either to kill himself or get killed in the process. And ironically, in the name of justice we are giving him what he really wanted – death. His masters would be happy that a country’s judicial system is doing what they originally intended to do – to kill a low-level suicide militant. Is that justice done to the victims of 26/11?

And is this going to send any message to LeT or such terrorist outfits? Is hanging Kasab going to stop them? Kasab’s masters would get a thousand Kasabs to replace him for their on-going or future operations. They have no use of getting a Kasab back, when they have new, unknown and enthusiastic Kasabs ready to kill themselves for their masters.

So what result is hanging Kasab going to bring? Kasab, the scapegoat of his terrorist masterminds in Pakistan, has now become the scapegoat here too. The government with all it’s intelligence failures and the inability to track down the mastermind roots will now gloat that we could kill a terrorist (after he’s done what he came here to do). The issue of our police force not being equipped with the right and proper armor (Karkare, a brave man, gave his life because of such ill-planning) will now die down.

I am not asking for mercy for Kasab, but a severe punishment; severe than a death sentence. And I think the best way to punish Kasab would be a rigorous life sentence as actor Rahul Khanna has tweeted. There would be more suffering than ending your life in a moment. With the hanging of Kasab, we are just taking a revenge, not doing justice.

And that’s got me thinking – When a victim takes revenge, it is called a Crime. When the state does that revenge for a victim, it is called Justice. Isn’t that funny?