Chak de India… ?!

12:30 am. Peacefully watching the movie in our car, my family and I were on our way back from Jaipur. All inspired by the idea of a united India, I was dreaming about the streams of gold medals in the upcoming Games, just when a white covered jeep stopped in front of us, and two drunk Jatts came out of it. Still not sure whether what followed was real.

After their failed attempt of pulling a ‘seat-belted’ Gulshanji out from the driving seat and pushing themselves in, they pulled out a “tamancha” (a long pistol). Seeing this, my reflexes helped me pull the front gate to close, which luckily caught the guys hand. Gulshanji, a retired army man, twisted this wrist of his to face the barrel towards him. Perhaps, they did not expect as much resistance and seeing dad coming towards them from the other side caught them off-guard. To our relief they scurried back to their car and drove away.

But what’s strange is that none of us bothered to take down the car license plate number so we could file an FIR later. We found some cops less than half a mile away managing an overturned truck, but we didn’t bother telling them either what happened. Worse is that we are still not doing anything about it! I’m not sure if it is just that we have no trust in our police department, or is it that we are simply happy to come out of it safe, or both. I see that we are at fault here by not reporting. But what I see also is a bigger problem.

This makes me wonder about how many more crime cases go by unreported without actually ever getting a real sense of the rates. How can it be made easier for people to contact the police? How can it be made easier for people to trust the police? How can the local governments track and respond to so many such, and maybe even worse, incidents happening all around us? What are they doing  to prevent these? Is it working? If not, then what are the alternatives? What is the biggest barrier to improving everyday security, specially in states like Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Rajasthan, where the so-called-crime-rates are highest? What is being done in other places? Is that working? Can we do something similar? Or are we?

I’m off to finding some answers. At least some…

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