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Street Crime – Lack of street lights or Minor punishment?

Introduction:

Earlier, when there was no street light people go out in night, there were crimes even then. But the rate of crime has been high as years go. Every human has a basic psychological fear when they are all alone in a dark street with no lights around. This is human nature to get that fear, but when a person with evil intention gets close to you at the same time leads to the “Crime” .We must have come across our old leaders saying, “We studied under the street lights, as we were not having lights in our home separately”. This is a say heard but every person in their home while they study in a room with proper light settings. Later, no one understood the need for street light was not only for brightness in dark, but also for safe ride back home. Here, comes a small doubt whether brightness alone stops people from their bad intentions? Or they not properly punished for their crime, also a reason for them to commit the same crime again and again? This is an ever ending doubt for us to get solved.

Crime rate under the dark:

As per January 2020 observation Kolkata has been stated as the safest place in India[1] for the 2nd consecutive year. It is not totally the safest city but comparatively it’s safer than the other states in India as of now. The lights at night are used mainly for people to know their way home I dark. When such sparkle is not available they tend to lose their way back home and state missing.

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We just cannot conclude that mire light is the cause of crime and other illegal activities. It might also provide an added advantage for the person to execute what he is planning. Crime like theft, human trafficking, murder and suicide take place not only in night time but also in day-time. These are executed by the immoral. It says that most violent and serious crime done at night than daylight hours[2]. According to the study done by US the crime rate is high in night hours than daylight hour crime, reasoning that they have a possibility to hide without their identity noticed.

Blue streetlight:

5 Years ago, in 21st  April 2015  a Reddit thread (TIL – Today I Learned) noted, That some areas in Scotland and Japan switched to blue street lights at night and saw a decrease in crime and suicide rates.[3] The change in colour does not mean that it reduces the crime on the whole, but it makes a decrease in the crime rate accordingly. The colour ‘Blue’ has a claiming effect as it resembles the sky and the sea. This makes a person who is obsessed with one thing to calm down and take a wise decision.

The Keihin Electric Express Railway Company [4] changed their colour lights of the platforms at Gumyoji station in Yokohama, Japan. According to the company observation, there would be some suicide attempts every year in their station. But, after the installation of these blue lights those suicide attempts are nil. It can also be said that just a colour cannot decide the destiny or a person’s mind. It’s just the illusion of a person to get through his own thoughts before he does it in real.

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Minor punishment for violent crime:

Each crime has punishment according to each country’s law and that plays a major role in a crime being committed. Will the crime rate decrease, if the punishment for each crime is equal to the crime that has been committed? May be, they might decrease the rate of committing such crime but we cannot assure the same. Every citizen should have the inner responsibility of being neat and pure rather than committing such immoral activities.

Conclusion: 

Immoral activities cannot be totally winded as it’s an impossible task to do so. But, we can try our best to reduce the rate of such cases to improvise our nation’s safety among ourselves. When a person is out in daylight he/she doesn’t tend to have a tendency of fear within him/her. But, when night hour start (i.e. from 7.00pm to 6.59 am) why it is being a 0.01% fear for each person at such time is an unanswered question. Like previously said, Kolkata has been known as the safest place according to the January 2020 observation[5]. That doesn’t mean that we can go out at night hour with all the confidence. It says, comparatively the state is safer than the other states in India. Every crime starts and ends in their home and the knowledge of the future consequences of such crime should make the person to think before he/she act accordingly. Minor punishment and lack of street lights in some areas are not only the cause of such violent crime but, they are also one of those committing such crime.

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[1] Dwaipayan Ghosh, Kolkata is India’s safest city to live in for 2nd year in a row, The Times of India (Jan 10, 2020, 07:56 IST), https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/kolkata/kolkata-is-indias-safest-city-to-live-in-for-2nd-year-in-a-row/articleshow/73180375.cms

[2] Lauren Favre, Study: Big City Crime More Likely in the Day, U.S. News (June 12, 2019) https://www.usnews.com/news/cities/articles/2019-06-12/study-finds-crime-in-big-cities-is-more-likely-during-the-day

[3] David Mikkelson, Blue Streetlight Crime Reduction, Snopes (21 May, 2015),  https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/blue-light-waffle/

[4] Id.

[5] Supra. 1.

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Author

Nivashini Seralathan
Student - SASTRA Deemed to be University