India seems to be nothing but a country of crimes and rapes to those living abroad, the Bombay High Court observed on Thursday while hearing a petition on the murders of rationalists Narendra Dabholkar and Govind Pansare, IANS reported.

Dabholkar was shot dead in Pune on August 20, 2013, and Pansare was shot in Kolhapur in February two years later. The Central Bureau of Investigation is looking into Dabholkar’s murder, and a special team led by the additional superintendent of police in Kolhapur is investigating Pansare’s murder.

On Thursday, while noting that the investigation in both cases had almost reached a dead end, a division bench of Justice SC Dharmadhikari and Justice Bharati Dangre, said, “Secular people are not safe in the country.”

Dharmadhikari said no institution was safe from being attacked, including the judiciary, The Indian Express reported. “Nobody from the outside world wants to be part of our educational and cultural set-up. Are we going to live in a cocoon?” he said.

Senior advocate Ashok Mundargi, representing the state, said the special investigation team had not reached a dead end, and that they were focusing on scientific investigation and tracking down call data records. Mundargi said there may be a better way of investigating the case, but Justice Dharmadhikari responded, “Not better, we have to outsmart them [the accused].”

The bench said these cases should not meet the “same fate” as others in the past, where “the prime accused has offered to return 40 years after the bomb blast, aged and completely tired”.

“Why don’t you take steps to completely strangulate the organisational backing that the accused persons must be receiving?” the bench said.

The High Court said it wanted both agencies to report their progress at the next hearing on June 28, or else it would be compelled to summon senior officials, IANS reported.