“Who Can Serve Justice in 45 Degrees?”

Trial by Error | The Aarushi Files

“Who Can Serve Justice in 45 Degrees?”

Illustration: Saachi Mehta/ Arré


take a seat next to Kamlesh Kumar*, who acknowledges my presence with a little nod. Intimidating at first pass, Kamlesh is timorous for an under-trial charged with a petty crime. His case has been dragging on at the Ghaziabad courts for seven years. When I ask him what he is in for, he just points to his handcuffs and says nothing.

My polite enquiries are met with answers about the state of Kamlesh’s upset stomach. But he is happy to be here because of his companion, the policeman assigned to him who is scrolling through his WhatsApp messages and typing with one thumb. “This is my dear friend, Inspector Tyagi*,” he says. Inspector Tyagi barely nods and continues to play on his phone. The two have developed a kinship arising out of forced intimacy. Their conversation is scarce, but they are connected by the comfort of mutual boredom.