The wanton manner in which thugs, over the last two days, have sought to assault, first, judicial activist Prashant Bhushan and later his supporters is shocking. There is an immediate need for the state to send out a strong signal before this becomes the norm for discourse, or results in a death.
Under the current legal dispensation, the assaulters, if arrested, face a maximum of three months imprisonment and a token fine of Rs 500. That’s wholly inadequate.
Prashant Bhushan (AP)
Instead, the judiciary, which has shown little patience with major infractions, needs to take the initiative once again. Not only should the trial involving Bhushan’s assaulters be closed in a week—before public memory fades—but the judges should also go beyond the law and ensure that the culprits spend a few years, at the least, in prison, discovering the pitfalls of resorting to non-verbal forms of communication and discourse.