Each day there are instances that point to the rise of the evil within our society that fuel hatred and violence. Terrorism is the new buzzword and does not fail to make a mark in the papers every day – day after day. In this era of rising aggression, the government has been handed the responsibility of curbing such upsurges. The methods adopted reflect the status of the phenomenon pervading common lives and the seriousness of the issue. As a matter of fact, the intensity has always been on the increase and the methods, constantly stricter. However alert the government may be, the terrorists are always a step ahead. The serial blasts in the recent past strongly support this.

There are a few alternatives to choose from and people are looking up to the government with higher expectations. While the ruling coalition is still struggling to find its footing and is nearing the end of its term, the rise of violence has posed serious questions to the integrity and effectiveness of the government. As the police and other organizations are ineffective to stop the acts of terrorist activities, the need to realize more powerful laws has become apparent. The current modus operandi to reduce the influx of new people into the hell of terrorism depends heavily on the legal weapons.

We have the most stringent laws in the likes of TADA, POTA. While it cannot be argued that such intensely rigorous investigation procedures are the best method to get the truth out of the stone-hearted terrorist-turned civilians, but it is for sure that the policies have not been used correctly. The powers provided by these constitutional cells are immensely addictive and vulnerable to misuse. It is frequently possible, both theoretically and practically, that some innocent person be caught in the whirlwinds of the complex proceedings. The ability to take hold of and detain any suspicious person casts heavy doubt on the efficacy of the system.

The implementation of TADA in its first 9 years saw effectively 10 percent convictions out of 67,000 registered cases. Rest of the cases ended in acquittals, gained after months of third degree torture and so on. The introduction of POTA brought new waves of fear among commoners. Given the arbitrary powers provided to the police, the fear was justified. As every doubtful citizen was subject to be caught under the POTA, there were very stringent means to get the person out of jail. This was necessary for the actual terrorists who usually had high links and powers but proved to be a bane for the innocent held under suspicious actions.

Those who did not have anything to prove their innocence became unfortunate victims. The atrocities committed on them were way beyond normal police procedures. Not only were the measures physically torturing but also powerfully demoralizing. The common man’s families were never able to get bail statements for those held under POTA and the subjects were endlessly tortured in the want of real culprits. The police vented their frustration of failure to get hold of the actual guilty on those who came in. So strict are the terms in these schemes that in the times of communal hatred and violence, it is imperative for the common man to get convicted. People on the lookout can target anybody who looks even a little suspicious.

These modes of detention are derogatory to the standards of life and must be carried out with great care and vigil to ensure that innocents are not hampered by the methodologies and the laws meet their ends to bring to court the actual guilty ones. It is one of the implicit responsibilities that is shipped in with each such law but is the most common one to be ignored in the due course of time in the name of duty. The laws are powerful enough and undoubtedly needed by the legislative to successfully prosecute the preachers of violence but must be accompanied by measures that reduce the impacts of it on the common man.

The solution to a balanced use of power and exercising control on the society is to introduce measures that ensure that the issues be stopped at their infancy. The point is to look for the causes that actuate such aggressive and destructive movements and identify the shortcomings that provoked such radicalism. It then must be carefully studied upon by the government and means must be introduced that could curb the causes that give rise to feelings of hatred and violence. There is obviously no answer to seeking new laws to solve the problem. The stricter the stance of the authorities, the higher and more resolute would be the methods of the fanatics.

Therefore, I feel that ut is thus quite useless on the part of our Prime Minister to ask for newer laws that would be even stricter and could help in solving the problems of rising terrorism.

Arindham Chakroborty

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