Rigorous or simple imprisonment for lifers? SC to examine
New Delhi: The Supreme Court has agreed to examine the question whether a person convicted for murder and sentenced to life term should undergo simple or rigorous imprisonment.
A bench of justices P Sathasivam and Ranjan Gogoi recently issued notice to the Maharashtra Government on the petition filed by a murder convict Ashok Parsappa Kodvan, who had challenged the life sentence awarded to him by a sessions court for the murder of his wife.
The Bombay High Court had affirmed the sentence upon which he filed the appeal through the Supreme Court Legal Services Centre( SCLSC).
According to the prosecution the convict had throttled to death his wife on July 13, 2002 at Lamboti Taluka, Solapur district as he reportedly susected her fidelity.
Senior counsel Parmanand Katara arguing on behalf of the convict submitted that he was not challenging the conviction but wanted the court to determine whether a person sentenced to life was liable for simple imprisonment or rigorous imprisonment.
A person sentenced to simple imprisonment will have to do simple works in the prison, whereas, a person facing rigorous imprisonment has to peform hard labour during his/her term.
The counsel claimed that Section 302 IPC nowhere defines the term "rigorous imprisonment."
Hence in the absence of any such definition, life convicts cannot be subjected to rigorous imprisonment, he contended.
The apex court then issued notice to the state for its response.
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