What is Justice? It’s just one perspective of reality
Lately, there has been so much news about rape cases, murders etc. and our judiciary being inefficient in passing judgements quickly. There are many opinions on this in the news. Some of them are:
“Justice delayed is justice not served. ”
“Justice given in haste is as good as revenge. Justice needs time. ”
“Criminals are humans they can’t be murdered, else what’s the different b/w them and us. “
Well, to be honest, all of the above statements are to the point. But if all of them are right then how do we decide what’s right or wrong. How do courts give justice?
In my opinion, there is no place where one can get true justice. For understanding this, let me try to explain how Judiciary works. There is a constitution in every country. The constitution is like a holy book for the country’s social existence. The constitution comprises a different set of laws. These laws are added/modified by the government. The government is elected by people. Most of the constitution laws require an agreement of 75% of leaders in the parliament. Once the laws are added, there are machinery and bodies to enforce them, the different departments managed by the government.
If there is conflict in the understanding of the law, we have courts to clarify. The courts are also responsible for correct interpretation of the laws. It is subjective to how the judge interprets those laws. It is also subjective on the enforcement authority and how they enforce it. Example: Recently the income tax department got harsh on the communication to tax-payers, which made people feel that the law is being bullied.
All criminal cases need to go through a trial, where the accused is given an opportunity to defend himself. Now how he defends is completely subjective to the lawyer he appoints, and lawyer’s capability. So the proceeding of the court is subjective to how well lawyers articulate their arguments and how clearly the judge(s) understands it. To keep judges in check we have a hierarchy in courts, where an upper court can review lower courts.
What I explained is TL;DR of how our civic society operates. If you haven’t already sensed what I am trying to indicate let me try explicitly:
• Laws are passed by 75% majority that means it doesn’t represent 100% of people being governed. In India that would be about 250M people.
• 25% of people who are enforcing this might not agree with it, i.e. they are working against their will to enforce it.
• A court trial is subject to arguments, so it’s subjective to the lawyer’s ability to defend the accused.
What I am trying to highlight is that for the judiciary to be truly right, both parties must belong to 75%, the enforcement needs to believe in it. The accused needs to believe in it. The judge needs to believe the arguments.
The structure works in most of the cases but isn’t truly correct. What people are getting is the most accepted version of justice. Nobody gets true justice, there isn’t one I think. If people believe that justice was served it has been, it might have been. But nobody can decide what’s right or wrong. It’s a matter of perspective. It’s a matter of how the perspective was presented.