Our honourable PM may be boasting high and low regarding the double digit growth rate of our country. However, it is also true, that the black economy, our country’s alter ego, evil twin and doppelganger is also thriving, and is getting more and more brazen by the day. Organised crime in India is one of the harsh realities which most people have come to terms with, the way they seem to be accepting the increasing temperatures’ and increasing water-shortage problems as part of their lives.
Organised crime refers to the mass perpetration and operations of activities that are banned by law across a wide region, through a well-established network of connections, by people who consider themselves “professionals” in performing them. These vary from prostitution, human trafficking, narcotic drug dealing, extortion rackets, money laundering, paid killing, smuggling of products like weapons and gold across borders that are forbidden by law, armed robbery, etc. There is no limit to the depth of horror and violence human beings can sink to make a quick buck, and organised crime is a live example.
The beginning of organised crime in India notably is believed to have begun early in the 1940s, when an Indian, inspired from a Hollywood movie robbed a bank of Rs 16 crore, and killed a policeman in the process. Probably, this is the sub-conscious reason why most people blame western movies for the collapse of the Indian society. The Mumbai Mafia is one of the worst and most deadly in the world, with its finger in almost every pie. Like other legitimate companies, the presence of the coastline and Mumbai’s long standing position of being the international gateway to Indian shores helps the underworld too, in strengthening its operations. The Bihari and UP Mafias are mainly infamous for trafficking women and children across the border and forcing them into prostitution and slavery. The Bangalore Mafia centres its operations on illegitimate gambling dens and smuggling. Currently, even politicians, Bollywood stars and famous sportsmen are alleged to have “connections”. Organised crime has spread its deadly tentacles across all spheres of the economy – virtually any ocean where there is an opportunity to make money. It has now even links to terrorist organisations, and it is believed that Indian criminals are heavily involved in aiding and abetting terrorist activities in India.
Organised crime is a dark reality in our country – because it is like a many headed dragon. You may battle with it for hours and succeed in chopping off one of its heads, but in seconds, another head will rise in its place. It cannot be completely defeated – only controlled and kept in check. Even for that, constant vigilance and tireless efforts are required. Law enforcement squads – The Indian Police and CBI – are only 2 weapons. To fight monsters like these, we need extremely powerful, agile and resourceful warriors. However, our warriors are extremely understaffed, have outdated weapons that haven’t been upgraded in decades, and are pitiably underpaid. Their jobs often require them to put their lives in danger, and their families in jeopardy – yet their salaries are not even sufficient to pay for a decent 2BHK’s rent, let alone expenses like food, clothing, education and fees for their children, etc. Even if they do catch the culprits, the criminals use their “connections”, money and blackmail moves to and fro, and the culprits walk scot free. Media is used shamelessly to blow matters out of proportion and twist the facts. Ultimately, the sacrifices and brave attempts of the law enforcement agents go to waste. Thus, completely de-motivated, most of them buckle under the system, and become a part of the corrupt system, which aids organised crime.
It is very easy to sit at home comfortably in the presence of family and friends, and casually dismiss the law and the government as useless or corrupt. But in order to fight crime, we must first of all, take some responsibility ourselves. It is our country too. Like for example, whenever you see a crime, don’t run away or turn a blind eye – report the crime instead. Take an active part in fighting crime in the country – and report any crime that happens to you or around you. Remember – it could as easily be you in the victim’s place. The worst that can happen is that the report may get ignored – but the best thing that can happen is that the police will catch the culprits, and justice will be served. And this possibility is definitely worth the effort. The police may be corrupt – but a surprising number of them are only so because they are dejected by the public’s attitude. Show them a little trust, and it may work wonders. Miracles do happen – but only with the impetus of faith.