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Supreme Court awards death sentence to rapist, says capital punishment cannot be abolished altogether

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The Supreme Court has ruled that the death penalty cannot be avoided altogether, while awarding death sentence to 37-year-old man from Rajasthan for raping and murdering an eight-year-old mentally and physically disabled girl in 2013.

A bench comprising Justice A.M. Khanwilkar, Justice Dinesh Maheshwari and Justice C.T. Ravikumar ruled that overturning the capital punishment in every case and giving it a silent burial, would be counterproductive to the entire system of maintenance of order in the society.

The Apex Court said that to maintain the objectivity of the judicial process and prevent it from being compromised, it was necessary to award death sentence in certain cases, so as to maintain the rule of law.

It further said that a court was not bound to seek reports on psychological assessment or the possibility of reformation of a convict at every stage, especially when there were overwhelming circumstances to show the perverted conduct of the convict.

If the approach to nullify the statutory provision carrying death sentence as an alternative punishment for major offences was followed in each case, even after the trial has passed the muster of judicial scrutiny and has been held not unconstitutional, it would compromise the entire system of maintenance of order in the society.

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