back to home......
better avoid ruse
us call a spade a spade. In a belated, rather
grudging, show of sensitivity to the barrage of
criticism drawn by it over a series of crossfire
deaths, a poor prevarication of extra-judicial
killings in Rab and police hands, the government has
decided to hold 'executive' investigation into all
such unnatural deaths.
The announcement of the decision has a vibe of
acknowledging a Rocca visit and the EU concern for
human rights having been voiced a priori. It has a
ring of familiarity too with the placatory touch of
sophistication shown under the spell of an impromptu
donor community meet on Bangladesh earlier on.
Shall we ever learn to act preemptively to save us
the embarrassment of doing it when forced down the
gullet? It could have been nipped in the bud with
perhaps the same executive inquiry which is not just
too little too late now but also abjectly suspect
after 365 instances of so-called crossfire death.
Turn now to the potential quality of the evasive,
self-explanatory executive probe! Understandably, it
will be held by magistrates, who are under the
executive control of the government susceptible to
doing its bidding. We see why it is an 'executive'
probe! It's a shade upbeat than departmental or the
earlier-vintage executive inquiry, though. But what
conclusion did those administrative inquiries reach?
Most of the instances of firing were given a clean
Although we would like to believe that the latest
correctional sounding move is serious, the
governmental attitude, disposition and approach so
far towards any hint of humans rights violation by
the media, legal circles and broader civil society
hardly inspire any confidence in the new resolve.
Let's be disproved on it.
Yet, our overriding suggestion is that the
government has judicial investigation headed by a
sitting High Court judge into the whole episode
without which no fair trial is possible.
The root goes deeper, indeed. There is the factor of
blanket dropping of cases by the BNP government
pertaining to 72,000 who were accused on 'political
considerations' of assorted crimes during the
preceding AL rule. The wholesale release of the
accused was an unthinking reaction on the part of
BNP government to the AL's perhaps sweeping
haul-ups, because among the let off might well have
been real criminals who needed to be proceeded
against under any government. One couldn't easily
shrug off an impression that among those set free
are elements who have had a hand in wreaking havoc
on law and order.
Over all, the right way to go about the whole thing,
to our mind, would have been to take at the right
time some of the other decisions the cabinet
committee has taken, such as for setting up separate
crime control and investigation units in different
police stations and placement of senior police
officials in charge of investigations. Reforming and
materially strengthening the police force hold the
key to establishing an effective and sustainable
crime control regimen.