Capital Punishment: Boon for society

Blog authored by Tushar Ranjan, 5th year law student from Amity University Rajasthan


The term “Capital Punishment” stands for many severe sorts of punishment. It’s the punishment that is to be awarded for the foremost heinous, grievous, and detestable crimes against humanity. While the definition and extent of such crimes vary from country to country, state to state, the age to age, the implication of execution has always been the death sentence. By common usage in jurisprudence, criminology, and penology, the capital sentence means a sentence of death. It removes unwanted people permanently. It can’t be ignored that if there’s no punishment of death penalty then there’ll be a really good chance of accelerating repeat offenders. In the present scenario, the law for the death penalty is that it shall tend only in ‘rarest of rare’ cases. All punishments are supported an equivalent proposition i.e. there must be a penalty for wrongdoing. One is that the belief that it’s both right and just that an individual who has done wrong should suffer for it. The execution also rests on an equivalent proposition as other punishments. The execution debate is that the most generally relevant debate, keeping in mind things that have been caused by today. Execution is an integral part of the Indian criminal justice system. The increasing strength of the human rights movement in India, the existence of execution is questioned as immoral. However, this is often an odd argument as keeping one person alive at the value of the lives of various members or potential victims within the society is unbelievable and actually, that’s morally wrong.


Supreme Court on Validity of execution in India Article 21 of the Indian Constitution ensures the elemental Right to life and liberty for all persons. It adds nobody shall be bereft of his life or personal liberty except consistent with the procedure established by law. This has been legally construed to mean if there’s a procedure, which is fair and valid, then the state by framing a law can deprive an individual of his life. While the central government has consistently maintained it might keep the execution within the statute books to act as a deterrent, and for those that are a threat to society, the Supreme Court has upheld the constitutional validity of execution in “rarest of rare” cases. In Jagmohan Singh vs State of Uttar Pradesh (1973), then in Rajendra Prasad vs State of Uttar Pradesh (1979), and eventually in Bachan Singh vs State of Punjab (1980), the Supreme Court affirmed the constitutional validity of the execution. It said that if the execution is provided within the law and therefore the procedure may be a fair, just, and reasonable one, the death sentence is often awarded to a convict. This will, however, only be within the “rarest of rare” cases, and therefore the courts should render “special reasons” while sending an individual to the gallows[1].

 A critical appraisal

So, the talk on execution isn’t ending. If the person is a victim and has suffered then definitely we are going to be in favor to retain execution. And, therefore, the one that has not skilled with such situations will mention humanitarian and moral grounds. The international trend is towards abolition. But India shouldn’t be compared with the opposite countries. Our social and economic conditions are considerably different as compared thereto of other countries that have abolished it. The country has the necessity of this idea of rarest of rare. Some exceptionally unwanted criminals demand execution. Recently, the 2 very famous cases named, Mohd. Ajmal Amir Kasab[2] v. State of Maharashtra[3] and State v. Mohd. Afzal And Ors [4].The quick succession of the 2 executions, also because the Supreme Court’s ruling with regards to execution earlier this year has raised the notice of controversy surrounding India’s penal system. The decision of the Delhi rape case was announced recently. The judges awarded the death sentence to the four accused and 3-year imprisonment to the juvenile. This decision has reignited the talk on execution. So, in some cases, this becomes mandatory to award the death sentence. Also, the main target should tend to the victim compensation scheme. Victims or their relations need to tend rehabilitation, economic help

 Case Laws on execution

EDIGA ANAMMA VS STATE OF ANDHRA PRADESH -It was set down on his that separated from investigating the points of interest the of wrongdoing and selecting in light of the degree of brutality administered the judge need to likewise investigate the criminal and his condition or haplessness while completing the wrongdoing,[5]

BACHAN SINGH VS STATE OF PUNJAB-For this example it’s been held that it again raised the topic of legitimacy of the execution. This was things that brought forth the rarest of uncommon cases and therefore the precept still stays a standout amongst the foremost critical case. [6]

MACHHI SINGH VS STATE OF PUNJAB-Keeping in mind the top goal to further illustrate the rarest of uncommon cases that the circumstances where the uses of the death sentence might be legitimized. [7]


Given the death punishment’s history of mishandling as an instrument of abuse, its abrogation—or possibly its limitation to punishment for just the most genuine wrongdoings—is an indication of mankind’s advance. The irregularity with which capital punishment has been utilized in numerous social orders since the mid-twentieth century means that how much individuals have come to esteem the privilege of life. In a few circumstances, capital punishment has remained a fundamental however tragic choice for protecting equity and the social request. Be that as it may, since everybody is bound to live on in time everlasting and bear always the results of their activities, it is better on the off chance that they have the open door in this life to apologize and make some type of compensation for their wrongdoings. Subsequently, aversion and discouragement are best overseen through the correctional framework, giving wrongdoers during their time of imprisonment the prospect to believe their wrongdoings and alter themselves. Eventually, however, the best and alluring obstruction lies not in the outside danger of punishment but rather inside the soul of every person and their craving to live in a tranquil, prosperous society.

[1] [1] Indian Express, New Delhi, dated 27.5.2015

[2] Convicted of involvement in the 2008 Mumbai gun attack was hung 21st November 2012

[3]  (2012) 9 SCC 1

[4] 2003 VIIAD Delhi 1

[5] AIR 1974(3) S.C.R.329)

[6] AIR (1980) SC 898

[7] 1 AIR 1983 SC 957:1983(3)SCC 470

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