This post has been self-published on Youth Ki Awaaz by Youth Ki Awaaz. Just like them, anyone can publish on Youth Ki Awaaz.

DON’T Hang The Rapists, For It serves No Good But Makes Killers Of Us All!

More from Youth Ki Awaaz

By Shamim Zakaria:

The pronouncement of death penalty by the Saket district court in the infamous Delhi gang rape case of 16 December’2012 has certainly echoed a fresh debate on the relevance of capital punishment. However, it is evident enough that death penalty or hanging can never be justified in the form of justice or can’t bring justice to anybody.

Death Penalty

Any civilized society can never have any place for death penalty. Whatever may the crime be, but killing someone is a form of violence. For the innumerable forms of violent and heinous crimes taking place in the society, we say that violence in any form is unacceptable, then how can we justify death penalty and support the right to take life of others?

According to Amnesty International, there are thousands of people in this country who believe that the use of death penalty is arbitrary, flawed and biased. Death penalty is merely short term revenge. Speaking in the context of rape, there’s no doubt that it is one of the most heinous crimes prevalent in the society and stringent punishment must be ensured. We, however, presume that the survivors of rape and other violence might want capital punishment for the convict, but through studies and research it has been established that even those women who are the worst sufferers of violence and these abhorrent acts don’t always want the physical harm of the convicts. According to the victims, what has been done to them, they never want that to happen with others. What they sought is justice, not revenge. And death in any form can’t bring justice to anyone. Moreover, death and a few minutes of fear before it is not what can be termed as punishment.

We often feel that death penalty might work as a deterrent towards bringing down the crime rate or creating fear in the minds of the criminals. However, there’s no evidence or research to suggest that death penalty succeeded in bringing down the crime rate or creating fear. A shocking survey reveals that in western countries where death penalty is still prevalent, the crime rate is higher than the countries which have abolished capital punishment. Speaking about Saudi Arabia and some Islamic countries, punishment like public hanging, chopping of limbs or stoning to death might create a degree of fear or deterrence of crimes but again we need to question ourselves if we want to transition into a society of that sort, where there’s even doubt about the credibility of the judgment? There might be a chance of false fabrication of the accused in some cases, too.

Shifting focus to the Indian justice system, there are certain disturbing elements in the system too. According to the law, only the rarest of the rare cases deserve capital punishment but earlier, while examining the parameters of the rarest of the rare cases, the court said that while delivering judgment in a particular case, the opinion of the society must also be considered. Now, this in itself is very shocking. How can the society’s will towards a particular case be surveyed? Does this mean that the judicial system must go along with the street noises? If a person is against death penalty in a particular case, how can they register their discontentment?

This brings us to the burning question again that why death penalty can’t be considered as a form of justice. Killing can never transform a society; it cannot serve or justify a community or society in any form. There’s a lot more to do, to make the society grow. To uplift the society in terms of aesthetic and moral grounds, focus should be on creating a space for education, acuity, equal access to justice and legal opportunity and eradication of poverty instead of just killing the offenders.

You must be to comment.
  1. LemonTeaLover

    I disagree, I think captial punishment is required. There is a reason why countries like Saudi are crime free, it is because even their petty punishments are such deterrants to crime.I don’t see any wrong in a society where the punishment to a crime deteres people from committing the crime to such an extent that it eradicates even the thought of committing a crime and forces individualsl to take the right path.While you are right when you say that maybe a societ should become crime- free by the merits of their knowledge and conscience to judge what is wrong and right, atleast as of today, education is not a solution to reduce crime. Many well-educated young people have raped, murdered, driven intoxicated, these cases come out every day.

    ‘If a person is against death penalty in a particular case, how can they register their discontentment?’ Have you heard in recent times, of an individual getting death penalty and not deserving a serious punishment?I have not!In fact, serious crimes would have gotten away with bail our a few years sentence had it not been for public uproar.I am sure I do not need to give examples. Our judicial system is not ruthless, even the accused is allowed to represent himself legally and put forward his justification. That is how the can register their discontent.

    Why should a person allowed to plan kill someone and take away that persons life and allowed to go scot- free and live his own life? What according to you is a punishment that such an offence deserves?

    Why, even our religions talk about a hell for the people who have committed heinous crimes.Of course, a lot of crimes are committed due to the situation of people, poverty is a huge reason.Where this might be the ultimate punishment for soul cleansing, for a society that does not want to encourage murders and rapes by saying, you will only lose a few years in containment for taking somebody else’s right to live with peace, sanity peace of mind and honour for the rest of their years.

    1. Gautam S Kumar

      I do no think the article stated that criminals should be allowed to roam free. Abolishing death penalties does not mean abolishing any kind of punishment what so ever for the criminal. The system should aim to make society a better place , yes and at times , not letting the criminal back into society is indeed the only way to do so, but killing the said person is never the solution. Compare the situation to when one of your gadgets is ‘broken’ in some way. The criminal has become what he/she is because of a variety of reasons. In other words, he is ‘broken’ And instead of fixing what is broken, no matter how many other gadgets the bad one messes up/destroys or at least even attempting to fix it, destroying it is not really reasonable.

More from Youth Ki Awaaz

Similar Posts

By Karun Lama

By IMPRI Impact and Policy Research Institute

By Nutrition International

Wondering what to write about?

Here are some topics to get you started

Share your details to download the report.

We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

Share your details to download the report.

We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

Share your details to download the report.

We promise not to spam or send irrelevant information.

A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

Sign up for the Youth Ki Awaaz Prime Ministerial Brief below