Wednesday, May 18, 2011

God, Hawkings and so on

Here is something I read in The Hindu today and found very interesting. You may too.

The Guardian Interviewer, Ian Sample, has also written more about it here on his blog.

Often, during discussions on god or religion, people say something like, "Even Einstein believed in god and said that science without religion is lame". I am unlikely to hear them say now, "Even Stephen* Hawkings says that there is no god".

* Not to be confused with even-stevens assuming that you pronounce Stephen as Steven and not Stefen - both of which are correct.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Human Rights

A couple of friends and I were having a coffee break at work . Both of them were incensed that the trial of Kasab had become a farce. Why should there be so much of a fuss about a trial and so on. As I have seen it happen many times before, the talk turned towards human rights activists (HRA). Both my friends are gentlemen and hence no foul language was used. In other situations with other persons involved, I have heard the HRA being called unmentionable things.

I too wonder sometimes as to why it should take so long to bring a person who is so obviously the perpetrator to justice.

These gentlemen went on and on, I had to do something. I asked one of the friends who has a son. The son is very intelligent boy and very talented in many fields. He is at the top 1 or 2% of his class in studies, draws well for his age, good at chess and so on. So, I asked him – let us call him L.

“L, just imagine this situation. Your son is coming back from college. The police come and arrest him on some trumped up charge. They plant a weapon in his bag and claim that that was the murder weapon. They fabricate other evidences also and take him to court and want him hanged. How will you feel?“ He paled even thinking about the imaginary situation.

I told him, “This is what the HRAs are for. They have to defend the innocent and the defenseless”. The only way they can do that is that human rights requirements are met, procedures are adhered to and the process of law is followed. They have to do that to everyone – no exceptions. The principle of law is that a man is innocent until proved guilty and he should be treated (not believed, if you like) as innocent.”
I think my argument touched them.  At least I hope so.

If anyone who reads this feels frustrated about something done by HRAs, just imagine the fate of my friend’s son for someone near and dear to you.

Here is one site that might interest you: If an elaborate justice system can do this, imagine what happens if it is offhand and principles are thrown to the winds?