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India Legal show: Death by hanging is cruel and barbaric, feel most panelists

India Legal show: Death by hanging is cruel and barbaric, feel most panelists

The latest edition of India Legal show deliberated on the contentious issue of death penalty by hanging and whether death penalty should be abolished or not.

Rajshri Rai, Editor in Chief, APN anchored the show. The panellists included:

  • Justice VK Mathur, former judge, Allahabad High Court
  • Rishi Malhotra, Advocate, Supreme Court
  • Pallav Sisodia, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court
  • IB Singh, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court
  • KTS Tulsi, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court

Rai started the debate by asking Malhotra who has filed a PIL in the Supreme Court asking for alternative systems other than hanging in death. She asked Malhotra that his main prayer in the PIL is to allow other alternatives for death penalty “What is your basis for filing this PIL? Is it based on law commission reports or on any other information?” Rai asked.

Malhotra replied: “The law commission report came at around 2012-2013. But before that in 1996, a Supreme Court constitution bench in Gyan Kaur case had categorically noted that Right to Die also means Right to Die with Dignity. And Right to Die with Dignity is also a fundamental right. So my contention is when law commission in its 187th report has categorically said that hanging is a barbaric, cruel method to execute somebody so certainly this undermines the line of argument of law commission.”

Tulsi disagreed with Malhotra. He said: “There is no painless death. And the most painless death is by hanging. The scientists have regarded hanging as the best form of death penalty. It is better than shooting, lethal injection and various other systems which mutilates the body and make people suffer. I really think considering the resources in Indian jails, this is the best alternative.”

Justice Mathur held contrarian view and adjudged that the lethal injection was the best alternative. Justice Mathur pointed out: “I think, all panelists on this show have agreed that death penalty by hanging is cruel. I think lethal injection is most appropriate.”

Here are the bytes/views of panelists:            

Justice VK Mathur

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Rishi Malhotra

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Pallav Sisodia

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IB Singh

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KTS Tulsi

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—India Legal Bureau