01 November, 2017


Should the rapist be hung? Is hanging likely to serve the interest of the society and prevent rape most effectively? In principle I do not rule out capital punishment as a valid last course in some cases. However, in the case of rape it is unlikely to be as effective, since it seems too distant. The actual punishment cannot be awarded until the due process is exhausted. By this time years have lapsed since the day of the crime and, therefore, relating the punishment to the crime may become well nigh impossible. Now consider these: Punishment in order to be useful - and not merely vengeful or confining - ought to - be swift so as to register in the public mind - be demonstrative and visible - serve as deterrent to the potential rapists - participative, if possible, where society plays a part in punishing the guilty I propose that the rapist should be tried at a special criminal court where the judges are specially trained in the following: - the ability to encourage the victim to open up, without unduly losing her sense of dignity and privacy and to prove her case with less pain - the capacity to distinguish between consented sex and forced / coerced sex After the accused is held guilty he may prefer one appeal. After exhausting this appeal - perhaps at the Sessions - he should be shamed, circulated around the place of crime, and otherwise publicly humiliated. Almost a repeat of medieval style punishment. Now, humiliation - bad that it is - is more likely to be observed by the potential rapists, than hanging the guilty in a dark, almost invisible dungeon. It is the DETERRENCE that is more important for the society than punishing a particular rapist. 

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