SHOULD WE HANG RAPISTS?
Growing public anger over the rape of an eight-year-old Muslim girl in Jammu and the rape of a teenager in Unnao, UP, has prompted the government to bring in an ordinance enabling courts to sentence those convicted of raping girls under 12 to death; it is unclear if the ordinance applies to boys. Critics claimed the order was a populist sop. Is there evidence, the Delhi High Court asked in response to a petition, that the death penalty serves as a deterrent? The Justice Verma commission, formed in the aftermath of the 2012 Nirbhaya case, argued that it didn’t. National crime statistics show sexual violence against children is on the rise. Nobel laureate and child rights activist Kailash Satyarthi calls it a “national emergency”.