The Bathani Tola Massacre and the Ranbeer Sena in Bihar

September 21, 2013

by Bela Bhatia (Source : EPW)

Recent judgments of the Bihar High Court have acquitted the perpetrators of organised massacres of dalits and other oppressed groups. What is public knowledge could not be proved in the court of law. It is now over a year since the high court judgment in the Bathani Tola case of 1996 was challenged in the Supreme Court. The hearings are yet to begin. A closer look at this massacre, and the everyday criminal activities that preceded it, shows how absence of timely intervention enhances predisposition to crime and paves the way to repeated massacres. As this case illustrates, the tardy and often biased functioning of the Indian judicial system undermines its basic purpose. Where justice fails, vengeance prevails.