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2008 Supreme Court judgement

2008 Supreme Court judgement

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Published by Priya VK Singh
landmark judgement on capital punishment
landmark judgement on capital punishment

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Published by: Priya VK Singh on Jan 07, 2013
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12/04/2013

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1REPORTABLEIN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIACRIMINAL APPELLATE JURISDICTIONCRIMINAL APPEAL NO.454 OF 2006Swamy Shraddananda @ Murali Manohar Mishra ... AppellantVs.State of Karnataka ... RespondentJUDGMENTAFTAB ALAM,J.1. Death to a cold blooded murderer or life, albeit subject to severe
 
restrictions of personal liberty, is the vexed question that once againarises before this court. A verdict of death would cut the matter cleanly,apart from cutting short the life of the condemned person. But a verdictof imprisonment for life is likely to give rise to certain questions. (Lifeafter all is full of questions!). How would the sentence of imprisonment
 
2for life work out in actuality? The Court may feel that the punishmentmore just and proper, in the facts of the case, would be imprisonment forlife with life given its normal meaning and as defined in section 45 of theIndian Penal Code. The Court may be of the view that the punishment of death awarded by the trial court and confirmed by the High Court needsto be substituted by life imprisonment, literally for life or in any case fora period far in excess of fourteen years. The Court in its judgment maymake its intent explicit and state clearly that the sentence handed over tothe convict is imprisonment till his last breath or, life permitting,imprisonment for a term not less than twenty, twenty five or even thirtyyears. But once the judgment is signed and pronounced, the execution of the sentence passes into the hands of the executive and is governed bydifferent provisions of law. What is the surety that the sentence awarded

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