Gist of Editorials: Is it Time to Abolish the Death Penalty (The Hindu) | GS – II

This year India introduced the death penalty for those who rape minors. Death must only be imposed when no alternative is left. Both severity and swiftness of punishment should coexist.

Relevance : GS Paper II (Polity and Governance)

[1800 words reduced to 180 ]


  • This year India introduced the death penalty for those who rape minors.
  • Arguments for abolition:
    • Most of the civilized world has abolished it.
    • It does not deter murder more than life imprisonment.
    • The death penalty is error-ridden.
    • It unfairly targets the poor and marginalized.
    • Punishment should not imitate crime; we do not rape rapists.
    • Administering the death penalty is traumatic.
    • UN resolution calls for a moratorium on the death penalty.
  • Arguments against abolition:
    • Proportionately punishment is just.
    • It has been upheld in liberal democracies.
    • India’s neighborhood is not peaceful.
    • A punishment cannot be judged by its impact on criminals.
    • This punishment is a reflection of societal mores.
    • The punishment is not arbitrary as courts exercise caution.
    • It is given only in rarest of rare cases.
    • In the last 13 years, only four people have been executed.
  • Way forward
    • Death must only be imposed when no alternative is left.
    • Both severity and swiftness of punishment should coexist.

 

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