Crimes in Big Cities: Their Causes and Cure
The crime rate has been increasing in our metropolitan cities at an alarming speed in the recent past. Not a day passes when we do not read or hear of daylight dacoities, holdups, murders, cases of bride-burning, pick-pocketing, burglary, etc. People have developed a sense of insecurity in our big cities. Neither their life nor their property is safe any longer. Things have come to such a pass that we have started taking these crimes for granted. What is worse, nothing is being done to check the growing crime rate or probe into the causes that have led to the sudden escalation of crimes in big cities.
The cause for the spurt in crime can be attributed to growing industrialisation and the movement of the rural poor to big cities in search of employment opportunities. This has become a significant cause because agriculture in the countryside has been neglected. Big landlords have grabbed the land belonging to the poor peasants who are thus forced to migrate to the cities in large numbers in search of greener pastures.
Once these rural poor land in the city, the glaring economic differences between the well-to-do city folk and their pitiable plight stare them in the face. They cannot find adequate employments, no do they have comfortable living quarters. As a such these teeming thousands living in slums or in shanty colonies far away from their place of work are frustrated. In most case their frustration leads to crime and other anti-social activities.
This is not to say that city people are angels as compared to these illiterate, under-employed and underfed poor. Modern science has invented new and slither ways of committing crimes and getting away with their booty right under the nose of the law enforcing authorities. Our modern police force is unable to tackle these criminals because it is hopelessly understaffed and ill-equipped. Of late a nexus has emerged between the police and the criminals where the former aid and abet crime in certain cases.
The third reason for the increase of crime in cities is economic. Life has become expensive. Honest and upright people find it hard to make both ends meet, while they find unscrupulous and dishonest persons flourishing in their midst. The more vulnerable of them, willingly or unwillingly are drawn into the net of these anti-social and criminal elements. Thus crimes rise with every passing day.
The rise in crimes is, therefore, a social and economic as well as a political problem. And it is on these levels that it should be tackled. Agricultural and land reforms should be implemented in the countryside in the right earnest to stop a further exodus of the rural folk to cities. Nobody would like to leave his hearth and home if he is comfortable enough in his surroundings. Those who are already employed in big cities, should be provided at least the basic amenities of life in the form of job, education, food and shelter in order to wean them away from any temptation. The police force must be updated and equipped with modern techniques of crime detection and summary punishments be meted out to criminals. The corrupt in the police force must be identified, their links established and they should be fined and punished if the crimes in big cities are to be effectively checked.