How can communities decide criminal cases?

It’s barely been two days since Nidhi Gupta and her two kids died. Her father, Bimal Jalan, has mentioned harassment by her in-laws but has not yet filed a police complaint. A report says that some members of the Marwari community have intervened:

“We are here to negotiate with Nidhi’s father. It’s a community matter. Taking matters to court and the police will only worsen matters. The community will meet and take this issue to its logical end.”

Logical end? Death too is. What are they planning to negotiate about – that her suicide note was genuine (it may or may not be), that she was happy, that he should accept his daughter was mentally disturbed for other reasons? Negotiate! Disgusting.

How is this case a community matter? It is not a domestic dispute. Three people have died in an unnatural manner. The cops were called in. How can any community decide on such things and in effect make the police and the courts seem redundant?

Are we planning to have individual community durbars? I have already expressed my views against fatwas. This is no better. But being an influential group, who knows what will happen? How many media people will question this attitude and try interfering as they usually are wont to do in other ‘lesser’ people’s affairs?

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