Mercy petitions should be disposed within a year: Top lawyer

Last Updated: Monday, February 7, 2011 - 23:15

Hyderabad: Strongly defending the provision
of capital punishment, senior advocate K T S Tulsi on Monday
termed the Government`s attitude in dealing with mercy
petitions as "reprehensible" and sought their early disposal.

"We take almost a decade, and in some cases more than a
decade, to deal with the mercy petitions. This is most cruel
and inhuman. You cannot keep a person on the death row like
this as the person just loses his mind and you can`t execute
an insane person," he said.

"There are persons whose mercy petitions are pending for
more than 10 years. This, as a matter of state policy, is most
reprehensible. Mercy petitions must be decided one way or
the other within a year," he said.

Participating in a session on `Death Penalty` at the
ongoing 17th Commonwealth Law Conference here, the former
Additional Solicitor General argued in support of awarding
capital punishment.

"There are situations in which death sentence is the only
just remedy. We can`t be such sentimentalist so as to endanger
the life of society. These (campaign for abolition of death
penalty) are arguments of soft hearts. I`m only asking for
justice and there are cases in which death sentences are the
only just punishment," the Supreme Court counsel said.

"Terrorists go on the rampage, killing people. What kind
of punishment will meet the ends of justice in a case like
that?" he sought to know.

"If we abolish death sentence and if there was a plane
hijacking, the terrorists will demand the release of Ajmal
Kasab (a LeT operative facing death sentence in 26/11
attacks)," Tulsi said.

PTI



First Published: Monday, February 7, 2011 - 23:15
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