Delayed justice


THE case of Mazhar Farooq, who had to remain behind the bars for twenty four years to finally get acquittal from Supreme Court on Friday, once again has highlighted the deep rooted flaws in our justice system which fails to provide speedy justice to the litigants. What to say of inexpensive justice, Mazhar Farooq has earned the acquittal after paying a heavy price. Before the beginning of his case in a trial court, he was the owner of a two hundred acre land but now owns nothing because of contesting his cases in different courts over the last two and a half decades.
We understand that there will be many such cases like that of Mazhar who will be awaiting justice over the last many years while in prison. Some even would have died before seeing the dawn of justice. Just last month the apex court acquitted two brothers in a murder case who were actually executed by jail authorities in Bahawalpur a year ago. Whilst we do not oppose death penalty as it in fact serves as a deterrent to curb crimes, there is a need to evolve such a system which ensure expeditious disposal of criminal cases. If one is guilty, he should get punishment at the earliest and similarly if one is innocent and has falsely been implicated in a case, he should also get justice without any delay. This is very much possible if our police department and the prosecution play their role in an honest manner and besides much needed reforms are also introduced in our subordinate judiciary. Justice delayed is undoubtedly justice denied. This is the delayed administration of justice that Mazhar Farooq spent 24 precious years of his life in prison. Should not this case as well as those of executed brothers serve as an awakening call for the relevant quarters to give a considerate thinking to the justice reforms and take this as a social responsibility?