court, law, judgement
Representational image. Image Credit: Pixabay

The brutal gang rape and murder of India-based Priyanka Reddy shocked the world recently. When police gunned down the alleged accused in an encounter people were divided about whether it was ‘justice’ or a blatant disregard for the judicial process. Gulf News readers discuss whether legal procedures or immediate justice are valued more.

Sound society

Legal proceedings are necessary

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights makes it clear that every human has the right to a fair trial, whereas in the course of this, the courts will assess the facts of the case in detail and all circumstances will be taken into account; for instance, the offender being mentally ill.

The sound delivery of justice can only be served following the necessary legal proceedings, irrespective of the brutal nature of the offence. Whilst many people may not condemn the extrajudicial killings of the alleged offenders without being put forward to trial, it is nonetheless a basic human right. Carrying out extrajudicial killings in the name of justice, will without a doubt, adversely affect society, whereas justice is to be ordered and enforced by the courts exclusively. Where justice is served ‘immediately’ the possibility of an unfair outcome automatically rises, which contradicts the term justice itself. Cases such as the gang rape and murder of Priyanka Reddy, which involves ruthless and inhumane elements should not deter us from following and applying the law accordingly.

From Mr Ibrahim Hamid

Paralegal based in Dubai

Law enforcement

A strong judicial system is needed

There is an old adage: ‘Justice delayed is justice denied’. Legal process should be short. The longer the process the more tragic it is for the victims as they have to relive the tragic memory. Justice gives closure. Immediate justice without legal process shows failure of the judicial system and if people are happy with that, it shows their lack of trust in the legal process. A strong judicial system also ensures that the innocent are not punished, so out of court encounters are not a solution as it does not guarantee the punished are always the guilty. The lackadaisical approach of the legal process is what gives rise to crimes and that is why people are appreciating the immediate justice as seen in the recent case. Besides this immediate justice is also biased as the law enforcement officers will not take the same step for influential people and law should be equal for all otherwise it is useless. For an ideal society it is important that legal process should be followed but it should be fast if not immediate.

From Ms Mahnaaz Sheikh

Managing director based in Dubai

Human rights

Extrajudicial killings are an abuse of power

Extrajudicial killings have been argued to be effective and necessary for the purpose of public safety. This is following to the recent events around the world including the killing of four rape and murder suspects by police officials in India and the execution of militia groups targeting drug dealers in the Philippines where justice was considered to be well-served and proportionate. However, freedom from arbitrary and extrajudicial killings is a fundamental right protected under international law.

The notion that a civilian may be deliberately killed by state actors in the absence of due process and a fair trial is appalling. In addition, public officials enforcing such extrajudicial killings are rarely prosecuted. Furthermore, this also raises concerns of abuse of power by the police force. As such, I believe that judicial guarantees and punitive measures against unlawful extrajudicial killings are necessary to preserve the most fundamental human right – the right to life.

From Ms Manar Hassan

Paralegal based in Abu Dhabi

Poll results

Do you value the sense of immediate justice or following legal process?

Immediate justice: 65%

Legal process: 35%

Have your say

What triggers people to value immediate ‘justice’ more?