India

RetentionistLegal status of the death penalty*
371Number of individuals currently under sentence of death
0Executions in 2021
4Executions in 2020
0Executions in 2019

2015Last known execution
Hanging, ShootingMethod(s) of execution
NoParty to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
NoParty to the Second Optional Protocol to the ICCPR, aiming at the abolition of the death penalty
Not applicableParty to the American Convention on Human Rights
Not applicableParty to the Protocol to the American Convention on Human Rights to Abolish the Death Penalty
NoUN Moratorium Resolution (2010): cosponsor
AgainstUN Moratorium Resolution (2010): vote
NoUN Moratorium Resolution (2010): has signed the Note Verbale of Dissociation
NoUN Moratorium Resolution (2012): cosponsor
AgainstUN Moratorium Resolution (2012): vote
YesUN Moratorium Resolution (2012): has signed the Note Verbale of Dissociation
NoDoes the country have a mandatory death penalty?
2021-08-30Last update


Source: Cornell Center on the Death Penalty Worldwide
*Source of classification: Amnesty International

Related document(s)

Document(s)

Legislative Expansion and Judicial Confusion: Uncertain Trajectories of the Death Penalty in India

By Anup Surendranath and Maulshree Pathak, on 1 September 2022


2022

Academic report

India


More details Download [ pdf - 417 Ko ]

The numbers and the politics of the death penalty in India tell very different stories, presenting complicated narratives for its future. The public reaction to instances of sexual violence and other offences over the last decade and the consequent political response has significantly strengthened the retention and expansion of the death penalty. This is reflected from the fact that that of all the death sentences that district courts impose, only about 5 per cent get confirmed in India’s appellate system. However, does this mean there is growing scepticism about the death penalty in the Supreme Court of India? Unfortunately, the answer is far from simple. An assessment of the death penalty in India’s appellate courts during the last decade will demonstrate that a crime-centric approach has hindered any principled discomfort with the death penalty or the manner of its administration. In particular, the Supreme Court has faltered in high-profile death sentence cases (i.e., offences against the state and sexual violence cases), and its track record of commutations has very little to do with principled considerations on sentencing. This paper argues that the political and judicial imagination of the death penalty, as a necessary part of the response to crime, creates significant and unique challenges for the path towards abolition.
This article was first published in Crime Justice Journal: https://worldcoalition.org/wp-login.php?redirect_to=https%3A%2F%2Fworldcoalition.org%2Fwp-admin%2F&reauth=1.

  • Document type Academic report
  • Countries list India

Document(s)

A Deadly Distraction, Why the Death Penalty is not the Answer to Rape in South Asia

on 25 May 2022


2022

Arguments against the death penalty

NGO report

Bangladesh

India

Pakistan

Sri Lanka


More details See the document

Since 2010, persons convicted of rape offences were executed in at least 9 countries, including India and Pakistan. Moreover, public protests against the rape epidemic, which led governments to introduce capital rape laws, illustrates the need to shine a spotlight in South Asia.

The report examines the use of the death penalty for rape in four South Asian countries: Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka and explores ways that anti-death penalty activists can challenge this concerning trend.

  • Document type Arguments against the death penalty / NGO report
  • Countries list Bangladesh / India / Pakistan / Sri Lanka

Document(s)

Death Penalty in India – Annual Statistics Report 2021

By Project 39A, on 4 February 2022


2022

Academic report

India


More details See the document

Project 39A at the National Law University, Delhi published the sixth edition of the Death Penalty in India: Annual Statistics Report which provides an annual update on the use of the death penalty in India along with legislative and international developments on the issue. As on 31st December 2021, there were 488 prisoners on death row across India (a steep rise of nearly 21% from 2020), with Uttar Pradesh having the highest number at 86. This is the highest the death row population has been since 2004 as per the data from the Prison Statistics published by the National Crime Records Bureau.

  • Document type Academic report
  • Countries list India

Document(s)

Deathworthy: a mental health perspective of the death penalty

By Project 39A, on 7 October 2021


2021

Academic report

India

Mental Illness


More details See the document

A first of its kind report, Deathworthy, presents empirical data on mental illness and intellectual disability among death row prisoners in India and the psychological consequences of living on death row. The report finds that an overwhelming majority of death row prisoners interviewed (62.2%) had a mental illness and 11% had intellectual disability. The proportion of persons with mental illness and intellectual disability on death row is overwhelmingly higher than the proportion in the community population. The report also establishes correlations between conditions of death row incarceration and mental illness and ill-health. Led and conceptualised by Maitreyi Misra (Head, Mental Health and Criminal Justice, Project 39A, National Law University Delhi), the study was conducted under the guidance of Dr. Pratima Murthy (Director, NIMHANS), Dr Sanjeev Jain (Senior Professor, Deptt of Psychiatry, NIMHANS) and Dr Gitanjali Narayanan (Associate Professor, Deptt of Psychology, NIMHANS).

  • Document type Academic report
  • Countries list India
  • Themes list Mental Illness
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