mid day editorial: A warning for those who fight for justice

Published: May 18, 2019, 07:00 IST | mid-day correspondent

A report said that the police had assured protection and said they would increase patrolling near the homes of the deceased's families once Rana is out from jail

mid day editorial: A warning for those who fight for justice

Soon after the Bombay High Court granted furlough ­-- a leave of absence from jail -- to the main accused in the Keenan-Reuben murder case, Jitendra Rana, in April this year, Keenan's father, Valerian Santos, had sought police protection for threats that his and Reuben's family had received from Rana. The accused has been granted furlough for 14 days.

A report said that the police had assured protection and said they would increase patrolling near the homes of the deceased's families once Rana is out from jail. To give context to this edit, Rana and three others had murdered Keenan Santos and Reuben Fernandes in 2011 in Andheri.

In a sensational case that shocked the city, the two were killed when they took on the accused and his friends for molesting their female friends. In May 2016, four persons were sentenced to life imprisonment. The families of the slain boys live in fear themselves and are also worried about a number of women, witnesses in this case, who live in the vicinity. The police must take their very valid fears seriously. Patrolling must be effective and consistent.

Besides the huge tragedy that this is for the families who have lost their boys, it is also an inadvertent warning for those who "intervene" and fight for justice. The boys died fighting for their friends.

It sends a message to look the other way when a crime is committed and reinforces the belief that one will pay a price and sometimes it is the ultimate price for interfering.

If harm comes to the witnesses or families, this will only cement that and stand as an example for others that it does not pay to stop somebody from getting harmed. The ramifications are huge and it is vital that all those being threatened are able to live in safety.

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