Thursday, August 04, 2005


Via BBC, Death for India parliament raider.

Isn't our contempt for the bastard better served through our mercy, not through our violence? Shouldn't we be a society big enough to walk away from our valid instinct for vengeance, even for people as depraved as the convicted terrorist in this case?

We hope President Kalam will commute his sentence to life imprisonment.


pennathur said...

Parliament raider? as in corporate raider?

Primary Red said...


doubtinggaurav said...

I do not think you award death penalty to demonstrate contempt, there are other charming ways for it.
The death penalty in this case is neccessary as
1) The culprit is a menance not only to the society but also to the state

2) It sends a message that state will deal ruthlessly with those who seek to harm the integrity and sovereignity of this nation


Primary Red said...

You don't believe that life imprisonment would achieve the same goals?

doubtinggaurav said...

That's a matter of jurisprudence.
Frankly speaking debate about capital punishment is very complicated with strong arguement for and against it.
What I really meant was, any sensible judicial system passes verdict not on basis of contempt or vendetta, but on the basis of well thought-out law and precedences.
If you had argued against the verdict from the position of anti capital punisment, it would have been better.
You can say it is more a matter of semantics and I will agree, but I think in this case it is very important.

As an aside regarding ONGC accident.
"Saagar Suruksha" sunk a week ago.
Call me paranoid but I am concerned about the investigations.

Primary Red said...

Fair enough. Lets stipulate that this blog's position is indeed anti-capital punishment, no matter what the underlying evil.

The ONGC investigative team is comprised of good people. Hopefully, they'll do the right thing.

doubtinggaurav said...

As I said earlier debate about capital punishment is very complicated and I have generally not followed it very keenly(As you will know in India it is not a political issue yet).
My humble thoughts on this is,
Capital punishment should be given in "rarest of rare" cases, when the crime is heinous enough to warran it, evidence is convincing enough for conviction and conviction in spirit upholds law of land as opposed to retributive justice.
Now regarding this case, I hope you will agree that crime was heinous enough (which was conspiring to attack and taking the elected representative as hostages),evidence I assume was convincing enough for three successive courts to pass and uphold the verdict.
Regarding the last point (i.e. not retributive) I will prefer it to life imprisonment, as in the latter case there is always a possibility that some "strong" external affairs minister will escort the militant as state guest as ransom for some hostage crisis


Gameboys said...

Parliament raider - another example of BBC double standards. Please note another part '...India blames Pakistan...', so there you go. Pakistan was not really involved, we just blame them. Contrast this to language used with regard to the IRA '...the IRA murdered...' (please check archives on BBC the day IRA made their cessation announcement). I rest my case.

Btw, I would argue against the death penalty for only one reason - don't give him the 'martyrdom' he desperately seeks. I support the death penalty for acts of terrorism that result in loss of life. Plus, our prisons are notoriously leaky. Or we may have to exchange him for a hundred people on a hijacked plane.

- Nanda Kishore


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