Saturday, May 27, 2006

Hurricane Jessica

Something I wrote for the paper which was hacked in editing because I was expressing opinion and not quoting anyone.


In what appears to be real life imitating reel, public rage at the “verdict” in the Jessica Lal case is building momentum. Taking suo motu notice of reports of shoddy handling of the case, the Delhi High Court sought all the details of the case from the police on Friday. Adjourning the matter till April 19, the court has asked the cops to file a reply to the allegations. The Rang de Basanti-like outcry at the dismissal of the case due to lack of evidence in what was, and still is, a prima facie open-and-shut case will spill out onto the streets on Saturday March 4, with a public rally at India Gate at 5.30pm.

Seize Manu Sharma (SMS)
Countless SMSes from friends, family and strangers have begun inundating cell phone inboxes since Friday, petitioning for a retrial against the acquitted. It isn’t just college kids stirring up a ruckus either. Journalists, fashion designers, restaurateurs and socialites are forwarding SMSes. NDTV’s petitioned the President for a retrial, showing hundreds of SMSes sent to the channel’s 6388 number as the literal voice of the people.

Cut and run
There’s even one SMS that wants the “entire film, modelling and advertising world to ban Shayan Munshi for his cowardice”. Munshi’s volte-face under interrogation is well known. Coincidentally, co-witness Malini Ramani who submitted in court that she had seen the accused fleeing the scene, has conveniently pushed off to Goa to “work on her fashion week collection”. Surprising considering her factory is in Delhi.

In Cyberspace
Another petition generating impetus in cyberland is at unityisstrength.blogspot.com. The site’s owners intend to send the page to the President today. At the time of going to press on Saturday afternoon, there were 121 comments, all filled with disgust and shame. The site states, “Everone of us, including Judge Bhayana, knows who the culprits are. Indians have always prided ourselves that with corruption all around, the judiciary in India is still untouched and is independent from pressures, political or monetary. This case will change that forever.”

The bigger picture
This is not about Jessica Lal and Manu Sharma anymore. A generation brought up under the belief that “this is India and aisa hi hota hai” is rebelling against the bureaucratic and political slime we are subjected to everyday. This nouveau riche, political-backed trash needs to be taught a lesson. This sub species of human being that does what they want because of who their daddy is. Enough is enough. We are sick of this Jungle Raj, of being governed by illiterate thugs and of being helpless against their atrocities. This verdict is not only a kick in the crotch for the judiciary; it is an embarrassment for the entire country.Although no one has yet expressed vigilante tendencies, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra’s box office hit is always ready inspiration. What goes around comes around. The corrupt beware… Hurricane Jessica is coming. You can’t run and you can’t hide.

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