As the editorial “No to death penalty” (Aug. 18) categorically asserts, the savage tradition of an eye for an eye should yield to more civilised punishment — like imprisonment for lifetime. There is not even a shred of evidence to prove that capital punishment deters criminality. Or else, medieval barbaric punishment such as chopping off fingers and hands for thievery would have eliminated all acts of dishonesty. Modern civilised jurisprudence, aimed at correcting criminal behaviour, should be pursued if criminality is to be eliminated. The root causes of crime — impoverishment, inequalities and other kinds of deprivation — should be addressed. That will supplement the corrective methods of punitive sentences.

Kasim Sait,

Chennai

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No to death penaltyAugust 18, 2011

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