Essay No. 336:
Law Grinds The Poor And Rich Men Rule The Law: This observation comes from Goldsmith’s book “The traveler”. The quotation points out the helplessness of the poor to get justice, and the might of the rich to mold law to their favor. Law is for all and sundry. The constitution of a country declares the right of all citizens, rich or poor, to get law as all are considered equal in the eyes of law.
However, at the practical level, in most of the Third World countries, law grinds the poor and protects the rich. The law falls heavily on the poor, while the rich can escape the grip of law by virtue of the power and influence they wield. If a poor violates any law, he is immediately help up, while the rich are not caught when they violate it. Societies where law is supreme, make no distinction between the rich and the poor.
Violation of law puts them to the grinding mill. In Pakistan, the big fish escapes the net of law. Big industrialists get loans form then banks but invariably do not return them. They get the loans written off through their influence and power. On the other hand, small peasants / cottage industrialists who fail to return other hand, their land / property is confiscated under law.
You Might Be Interested In:
The poor thus render themselves to be caught in case of violation of law, while the rich being in a privileged position can break the law and then escape. It amounts to saying that the law does not rule the rich as they rather rule the law. Societies in poor countries, by and large, are not properly governed by law and that is why the poor people in particular do not get justice.
Justice is sold and purchased by the rich. This may not happen in the Western society where law is fully entrenched and respected. There the law grinds the rich as well as the poor. No one can dare to hijack law to his/her favor. Hence Pakistan society would be stabilized in the real sense when the law applies to the rich and the poor in an equal measure.
This calls for the independence of judiciary of interpret law without any fear of favor. An independent judiciary can dispense justice to all and sundry and can reverse the tendency of law grinding the poor, and allowing the rich to rule of law.