I just had a text from Ada Derana asking people not to take the law into their own hands and hand over the Grease Devils to the Police and not take the law into their own hands.
What on earth is going on? Who are these Grease Devils? All I noticed was that in Pottuvil today a SLMC candidate had been killed, by whom was not all that clear and Govt. ministers had been sent to quell a possible riot.
It also seems to me that the Police are in the thick of it. So is anyone fair game? Innocent or guilty. We have been fed by a mob mentality, and rumor mongering. I have traced a number of incidents over the past three weeks all over the country and all this seems to be wrapped up in one word "Grease Devils"
The mob mentality is in full force now in SL far worse than the UK situation which is now under control. If anyone has a grudge against a person he is accused by his enemy of being a "Grease Devil" and the whole village then gets into the mob instinct of uncontrollable anger, without checking through the credibility of the accusation. They then effectively lynch the person to death, and as it is a collective action of the village the Police dare not take all into remand as it would start a riot. This seems to be the latest way to get rid of one's enemy by making a false accusation.
Now why is this happening? It is because people have decided that there is no point in making a police entry or complaint as the OIC who has jurisdiction over the area, will not take any action, especially if the accused is a politically connected person or a member of the underworld with police protection. I do not know the answer, though I know for a fact that the fewer entries made in a police station looks good on the OIC as it shows there is little crime in his area of responsibility.
Then in other cases the Police have been handed suspects, who the police seem to have released due to interference from a local politician, as the OIC is beholden to his patron the main governing politician in the area. The villagers then agitate, and go to the Police station to ask them to show the suspect they brought in the previous day, and when the police are not able to give a satisfactory answer begin to agitate, causing a tense situation.
With this latest request to hand over the suspects to the Police it is apparent that the Govt. is worried that the people will take the law into their own hands, and will do one of two things, namely, lynch govt. or underworld characters receiving state patronage, who need to be protected, lynch innocent individuals that someone does not like, and is accused by a person as having committed a crime, and roused the people to take the law into their own hands as the Police will rightly do nothing about the innocent being falsely accused.
What happens here to the Police? They are seen by the public as being the ones who release ALL be they be innocent or guilty as shown above, and hence their credibility has sunk to a new low.
The only solution to this is to ensure equal justice for all. Every accusation should be investigated thoroughly, as now people have got used to making false accusations and false reports, and only action taken thereafter. The problem for the police is that they have got so used to beating up people under their custody, that only the ones with connections get off, and then only the innocent get beaten.
The problem of the mythical GREASE DEVIL can only be solved if people are confident that the police will continue to administer justice fairly, and that no political patronage will be used to release the guilty. This is a very serious problem in Sri Lanka that is under reported for obvious reasons, and so the rampant crime wave in Sri Lanka rarely gets a mention, due to the involvement of the state, indirectly by its henchmen, in much of this.
It is regretful, that in a so called time of peace, people live in fear of their lives from the local criminals who hold sway, unpunished and unafraid. These are the real GREASE DEVILS who slime out of every criminal activity!