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Supreme Court wants constitution bench to set norms for death sentences | India News


NEW DELHI: Emphasizing heterogeneity in approaches and differences of opinion on how to proceed and analyze mitigating situations, while awarding death penalty convicted by the court, Supreme Court on Monday moved the matter to the Constitutional five-judge bench for a full and competent trial.
A bench of Chief Justice UU Lalit and Judges S Ravindra Bhat and Sudhanshu Dhulia noted that in some cases trial courts have sentenced a defendant to death on the same day of conviction, thus from refuse to plead for extenuating circumstances. considered to convince the court that criminals do not deserve the death penalty. The court also said that even crest said that such an order of a lower court cannot be overturned solely on the grounds that the order of conviction and sentencing were passed on the same day.

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Note that there has been a divergence of opinion among previous high courts on how much time is “enough” for a convicted person to present his or her case to the death penalty and how should the procedure be to assess the extenuating circumstances, the court said there should be clarity of the matter and directed that the case could be placed before the Chief Justice to form a larger bench for it.
The ruling came as legal experts and judges expressed concern about a lack of consensus on how to define “mittening factors” against which the death penalty could be reduced.
“It is also a fact that in all cases where the imposition of the death penalty is a sentencing option, the aggravating circumstances will always be noted, and will be part of the prosecution’s evidence, leads to conviction, while defendants are rarely able to record extenuating circumstances, for the reason that the period for doing so is post-conviction. This left the condemned man in a hopeless position, leaning heavily on his side. This court held that clarity on the matter was needed to ensure a unified approach to the issue of giving real and meaningful opportunity, as opposed to a formal hearing, to the defendant. /convicted, on the matter of judgment,” said the Bench.
It said that the apex court in its various rulings acknowledged that a “meaningful, real and productive” hearing must be afforded to the defendant, with the opportunity to add material related to the matter. sentencing topic. However, the presiding judge said that the issue of how to constitute ‘enough time’ at the trial stage has so far not been resolved by the court.
‘Clear conflict of opinion’
The court also said that even the summit court had declared such an order of a lower court could not be overturned merely on the basis that the order of conviction and sentencing were passed on the same day. The ruling came as legal experts and judges expressed concern about a lack of consensus on how to define “mittening factors” against which the death penalty could be reduced.
“It is also a fact that in all cases where the imposition of the death penalty is a sentencing option, the aggravating circumstances will always be noted, and will be part of the prosecution’s evidence, leads to conviction, while defendants are rarely able to record extenuating circumstances, for the reason that the period for doing so is post-conviction. This left the condemned man in a hopeless position, leaning heavily on his side. This court held that clarity on the matter was needed to ensure a unified approach to the issue of giving real and meaningful opportunity, as opposed to a formal hearing, to the defendant. /convicted, on the matter of judgment,” said the Bench.
It said that the apex court in its various rulings acknowledged that a “meaningful, real and productive” hearing must be afforded to the defendant, with the opportunity to add material related to the matter. sentencing topic. However, the presiding judge added that the issue of how constitutes ‘enough time’ at the trial stage has so far not been resolved by the court. “What is clearly absent is consideration and contemplation of the time this may take. In the event that it considers that a true and effective hearing may not be possible (for reasons of same-day sentencing), this court is satisfied that the error has been remedied at the appellate (or appeal) stage. review), by claiming the defendant the opportunity to supplement documents, and thus fulfill the duties of Section 235(2),” the bench said.
It said there was a clear conflict of opinion between the decisions of the two benches of three judges on the matter and that giving a separate hearing for a convicted person was an important safeguard. to maintain the use of the death penalty in some of the rarest of cases.





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