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Vox pop

With reference to the editorial Reason gets crowded out (October 15), it is tragic that 115 people lost their lives in a stampede on a crowded bridge across Sindh river leading to the Ratangarh temple in Datia district of Madhya Pradesh.

india Updated: Oct 15, 2013 22:10 IST

Authorities must show political will to establish crowd control mechanisms
With reference to the editorial Reason gets crowded out (October 15), it is tragic that 115 people lost their lives in a stampede on a crowded bridge across Sindh river leading to the Ratangarh temple in Datia district of Madhya Pradesh. It seems the state government had learnt no lessons from the 2006 stampede at the same spot. However, be it the Muzaffarnagar riots or a natural calamity, politicians miss no opportunity to score political points. They must realise that stampedes have unfortunately become more the norm than the exception at places where large number of people gather. The time has come for the governments at the Centre and in the states to show the political will to establish stringent and comprehensive crowd control mechanisms across the country.
MA Haque , Gurgaon

It’s time to free the criminal justice system from patriarchal influences
With reference to the editorial Time to define rarest of the rare (Our Take, October 14), it is appalling that the criminal justice system is still skewed against women, especially in the cases of sexual crimes. From lodging an FIR to fighting a court case, women are on trial. The burden of proof is on the victim and not the accused. It may be recalled that the Supreme Court while upholding a death sentence in a 2007 case of kidnapping and murder of a boy said that the death of a male child would lead to an end of the family lineage. This clearly shows that the rarest of rare dictum is open to subjective interpretation by a patriarchal criminal justice system.
Kiran Yadav, via email

The death penalty discriminates against the impoverished
With reference to Harsh Mander’s article Retribution not justice (Democracy Wall, October 14), the writer is correct in saying that the provision of death penalty is discriminatory against the poor. Often the impoverished and economically disadvantaged have no access to lawyers and inadequate legal representation weakens their case. The judiciary must revisit the norms on the death penalty and clearly spell out what determines the rarest of rare cases.
Sandeep K Poswal, via email

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