State-level debate on death penalty

“We are in a period which has been following reformatory theory where crime is considered to be a disease and the convicts as patients,” said Dr. C.K.N. Raja, Director of Legal Studies, SBRR Mahajana Law College, here this morning.

He was delivering the keynote address at the inaugural function of the State-level Debate Competition on the topic ‘Is it proper to award death penalty to convicts in India?’ organised by SBRR Mahajana Law College.

“Today, jails in the country are considered to be hospitals and every inmate as a patient. It is the duty of the jail authorities to bring changes in the convict during his punishment period so that he becomes a good citizen of the country,” said Dr. Raja.

He said that there have been several examples where the Supreme Court has reduced the punishment from death penalty to life imprisonment considering the age of the accused or social circumstances.

Dr. Raja said that sometimes social circumstances force a person to commit heinous crime, the Supreme Court in its verdict in one of such cases has said that under such circumstances a person should not be subjected to death penalty but he/she should be sentenced to life imprisonment.

Dr. Raja also expressed that according to the law, when death penalty to a person is not executed within 2 years of sentencing, then it should be reduced to life imprisonment, but still there is no clarity why there is delay in executing death penalties in the country.

Earlier, Journalist Rajashekara Koti, in his inaugural address, said that there was a need for discussions on the abolition of death penalty in the world. He said that though UNO is firm on the abolition of death penalty, many countries have expressed their wish not to abolish it.

“India is one of the countries around the world which is against the abolition of death penalty. Recently, the law has been changed with regard to rape and murder after Delhi gang rape case. The newly formed law says that a person found guilty of rape and murder charges can be sentenced to death penalty. The new law might be formed to stop the repetition of such heinous crimes, but still we are finding many such cases being reported everyday in the country,” said Rajashekara Koti.

He added that many human rights activists have expressed that, sentencing a person to death penalty would be nothing but a murder committed from the Government. Moreover, women across the country have been demanding for dead penalty for the rape accused, he added.

Koti also sought to know in case death penalty was abolished in the country, then what happens to the terrorists. Citing the example of Kasab, he mentioned that the Government had to spend crores to keep him secure until his execution last year.

He added that such debate competitions should come out with a strong opinion on such complex matters so that the same is forwarded to the Government for consideration. Mahajana Education Society President R. Vasudeva Murthy and SBRR Mahajana Law College Principal Prof. K. Rajashekara were present on the occasion. Around 80 students from different colleges across the country are participating in the State-level debate competition.

Courtesy : Star Of Mysore