The Justice J.S. Verma Committee has desisted from recommending chemical castration and death for rape — even in the rarest of rare cases— and a reduction in the age of juveniles from 18 to 16. It has instead proposed life imprisonment for the entire natural life of a criminal.
So we are now left with a recommendation that raises questions on whether the discretion of judges in interpreting the “rarest of rare” cases will be applied with the sensitivity that rape cases deserve. Psychopathic criminals will now serve a life term, possibly be let off on parole or freed on account of “good conduct”. If the judges are to be believed, they may even reform. Give us a break, please.
No doubt the death penalty is too harsh for a criminal. But one who rapes and kills is not an ordinary criminal. The punishment for such brutality should be such that a person should be utterly scared to even contemplate such acts. Unless a criminal understands that the punishment for such crimes will mark the end of his life, they cannot be expected to fade away.
As one of the calm and mature youth whose power Justice Verma has acclaimed, I fully agree with him. Death can never be a solution for rape.
The punishment for rapists can be made harsh with imprisonment for the rest of their lives. If a rapist dies, the issue will also die. But his imprisonment for his entire natural life will act as a deterrent.
Justice Verma deserves to be lauded. It is good to see that unlike our politicians, eminent citizens do not promote the views of a highly emotional public. What still needs to be seen is whether the government will act on the recommendations.