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15 hours bail in Pune Porsche Crash has clarified that law, legal system and judges are the puppets of rich and powerful in country. Law is same for all is just a myth

Rich Boy Walks Free in Pune Porsche Crash. A Look at the Pune Porsche Case and the Disparity in Justice 

The recent Pune Porsche case accident, where a minor was driving an unregistered Porsche at a high speed and caused two deaths, is a disgrace to the Indian legal system. The bail given in just 15 hours to the accused Vedant Agarwal, son of a businessman, has raised a lot of questions regarding partiality in the justice system for the elites. This case reveals how the law provides justice only for the elites and the privileged in India, eliminating the principle of ‘equal to all before the law’.

The Incident

  • Vedant Agarwal, a 17-year-old, allegedly drove an unregistered Porsche Taycan at over 200 km/hr.
  • The vehicle was reportedly unregistered and lacked a licence plate.
  • The accident claimed the lives of two 24-year-old IT professionals.
  • CCTV footage emerged showing Vedant consuming alcohol with friends hours before the crash despite a negative blood alcohol test.
  • Vedant was granted bail within a mere 15 hours of the incident.
  • Vedant was served pizza and biryani while in Jail.

The outcome of the case and the response following the incident, which angered the nation, was the best evidence of how the rich can twist the law. The influential family of Vedant immediately went into action to arrange for his release as early as possible. In the next 15 hours, he was released on bail, which many charged under similar offences would seem impossible. The speed at which this occurred was not merely exceptional but surreal and only exposed another kind of injustice that the legal system has towards the less privileged sections of society.

This is illustrated by the fact that Vedant was granted bail within the shortest time possible, 15 hours, which shows that the justice system is not equal for all citizens. Instead of suffering for his criminal acts, all Vedant received was what could be termed as a warning or a punishment that is vastly inadequate. His bail conditions included 

  • Accused of submitting a 300-word essay on the topic ‘Effect of road accident and their solution.’
  • Parents to ensure that he does not repeat the same offence
  • Parents to keep the accused away from joining any bad company
  • Accused to study the traffic rules and submit a report within 15 days
  • Mandatory counselling for the accused
  • Parents to ensure his presence before the Juvenile Justice Board

Such relaxed measures are an insult to justice, especially given that two people died as a result of his actions. In most cases, people charged with such serious crimes, and especially those that involve deaths, are usually placed on stringent bail conditions if they are granted bail at all. The conditions given to Vedant made one wonder how the severity of his crime was downplayed and allowed a dangerous trend where influential and wealthy individuals are above the law to thrive.

In comparison to other cases shows “Two Indias in the courtroom”

This must be compared with how people caught in legal battles are dealt with here. Some spend even years in prison before they are brought to trial; instead, trials for minor offences take many more months, if not years. The ability of Vedant to secure a quick bail shows that justice is only for the rich and powerful people, who can hire expensive lawyers and influence judicial processes.

For instance, one can consider cases of poor people who are assumed to have committed minor crimes and are arrested and detained in Jail for several days and weeks because they were unable to pay bail. Such individuals experience long trial periods without justice, negatively impacting their lives and job opportunities. The differences between the actions taken against Vedant Agarwal and these individuals are striking and reveal the hypocrisy of the Indian legal process.

The Vedant Agarwal case has happened several times and is not an unique event. The Indian legal system has had an infamous tradition of bowing to the pressure of the moneyed elites. Prominent people always influence legal systems so that the victims can never get justice. Police investigations are often delayed, witnesses become uncooperative, and evidence vanishes into thin air. That is why such practices keep the rich out of reach of the impacts of their actions, a sign of inequality.

A worrying trend of bias can be observed through a systematic evaluation of the legal issues that have been addressed in various cases. High-profile cases involving influential personalities often see a peculiar set of coincidences: The consequences include delayed investigations, loss of substantial evidence and better judicial opinions. This pattern suggests a deeper problem within the legal and judicial systems of the country, which is that those with influence can pressure their way into getting favourable judgments.

The Myth of Equality Before the Law

The basic concept of ‘equality before the law’ forms part of the Indian Constitution. However, seeing it being practised is a rarity. The swift bail granted to Vedant Agarwal, combined with the lenient conditions imposed, sends a clear message: there is a sense that justice belongs to the privileged class in India. People cannot change the system or the laws; thus, they are left to their own in a world of complicated legal procedures known to be slow and biased.

It is not only a violation of the laws but also of the principles of justice and fairness. Equality before the law is a principle well established in any democratic nation; however, in India,it is nothing but a reality only on paper. The Vedant Agarwal case is a typical example of inequality wherein the affluent can easily manage their affairs within the legal frameworks. At the same time, people with low incomes are left to fend for themselves.

Public Outrage and Distrust

It is not surprising that such cases cause public outrage. They undermine people’s confidence in the legal system and highlight the need for change. That is why when justice is not served, particularly in such high-profile cases, people lack faith in legal systems and democratic principles. It becomes frustrating to the people who expect and seek protection under the laws and fair justice delivery system.

It is why the Vedant Agarwal case has caused a lot of upset and frustration among people. Hashtags and news feeds have been filled with demands for justice and punishment. The public response is indicative of the fact that people have lost faith in the legal process. The lack of accountability of elite individuals renewed doubts about the legal system’s effectiveness and the assumption that justice is no longer attainable.

The Role of Media

The media is responsible for providing the general public with information on various issues while also acting as watchdogs regarding issues surrounding the power elites. In the Vedant Agarwal case, the media also played an active role in raising society’s conscience. However, media attention is usually temporary as the public quickly forgets what was reported until there is follow-up pressure on the justice system.

Political elites are privileged to have easy access to media, which enables them to manipulate the message. They may offer interviews to certain outlets or decide to sue others, bending the news to their will. There are scenarios where some influential personalities have been able to restrain the stories coming out. Preserving a free and independent media is crucial to guarantee that the legal system remains open and transparent to the public.

Looking ahead, we can predict the next steps with disturbing accuracy. 

  • The police, likely under pressure from influential quarters, will “lose” critical files and evidence. It’s a tried and tested method to derail justice. 
  • Witnesses, initially ready to testify, will mysteriously turn hostile. They might be coerced, threatened, or bought off. 
  • The judges and prosecutors will change, and each new official will bring further delays, ensuring the case drags on forever. Years will pass. 
  • The endless legal battles and the glacial pace of proceedings will wear down the victims’ families. 
  • The public interest will wane as newer scandals emerge. And finally, after two decades of legal wrangling, the inevitable verdict will be announced: Vedant Agarwal will be declared innocent due to “lack of evidence.” 
  • The case will be closed, another rich kid will walk free, and justice will be buried under legal jargon and procedural delays.

This is not a dark picture of the future: this has happened time and time again where the powerful and wealthy walk free while the facts pointing to their involvement in the crime remain undeniable. Do you still recall Salman Khan’s case, where he was accused of causing the death of a man by hitting him with his car and then driving away? The Bollywood actor killed several people who were sleeping on the pavement, but through legal backing and the help of influential people, he went free.

Do you know the story of Nanda BMW that involved a highly profiled son who killed several people after he was under the influence of alcohol and was driving a BMW? The script was eerily similar: Lack of proof, unfriendly witnesses, and final discharge.

This sad scenario fits well in the Vedant Agarwal case. It is a bitter pill to swallow that in the country of India, the elite can commit murder and go scot-free. Instead of equal and fair protection for every citizen, the laws have become a mere mechanism by which the elite ensures immunity. The judiciary should be the most impartial branch of government, but it often becomes a theatre for the rich where bribes replace truth and justice.

Opinion

The Vedant Agarwal case must be seen as a starting point for much-needed debates on further judicial reform in India. It sheds light on the pressing issue of bias and inequality in the legal system that needs to be solved. It is for the judiciary, government, civil society and the people to ensure that the law is the same for everyone.

To ensure long-term efficiency and effectiveness, India should embrace all-inclusive legal reforms that emphasise equity, responsibility, and responsiveness. Only then can this dream of equal justice for all become a reality.

Sehjal
Sehjal
Sehjal is a writer at Inventiva , where she covers investigative news analysis and market news.
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