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Should Death Penalty Stay or Should It Be Struck Down: India Asks States

Should Death Penalty Stay or Should It Be Struck Down: India Asks States

Should Death Penalty Stay or Should It Be Struck Down: India Asks States
March 24
15:24 2017

The Indian government has sought the opinion of states following the Law Commission’s recommendation that the death penalty be abolished for all crimes except terrorism.

Minister of State for Home Affairs Hansraj Ahir said in parliament that the Law Commission in its 262nd report recommended that the death penalty be abolished for all crimes other than terrorism-related offences and waging war.

“The commission said that death penalty under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code be abolished except in cases of terrorism since it does not serve the goal of deterrence any more than life imprisonment,” Ahir said.

“As Criminal Law and Criminal Procedure are in the concurrent list of the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution, the report has been circulated to all state governments and union territories for seeking their views,” he said.

There had been a considerable debate in India regarding the abolition of the death penalty as many felt it had no effect on crime, which was increasing.

“Death penalty should be abolished, the Law Commission has also recommended for the abolition. First of all, it violates the International Human Rights Laws and moreover, the death sentence does not act as a credible deterrent to control crimes. Therefore, state governments should rethink about the death penalty as their view is important in this matter,” eminent lawyer and MP Majeed Memon told reporters.

In the upper house of parliament last year, MP D. Raja had moved a private member’s bill to abolish the death penalty. In the discussions thereon, Kiren Rijiju, the other Minister of State for Home, had replied to the motion that the government was not in favour of abolishing the death penalty due to prevailing circumstances.

Rijiju had enumerated provisions of the constitution under which death sentences could be commuted apart from the process of appeal till the Supreme Court which was available to people sentenced to death.

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Edward Bokhua

Edward Bokhua

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