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ActionAid India expresses concern about Supreme Court upholding death sentence on the Nirbhaya case

Date : 5-May-2017

New Delhi, May 5, 2017:  While appreciating the Supreme Court’s verdict today in confirming the conviction of the accused in the 2012 Nirbhaya rape and murder case, ActionAid India expresses concern about the upholding of the death penalty. In principle ActionAid India feels that the death penalty should not be on the statute books of any democratic and civilized country.

Sehjo Singh, Director – Programmes and Policy at ActionAid India, said:

“While we welcome the confirmation of the conviction by the Supreme Court, we feel discomfort with the upholding of the death sentence.  We believe that even in the “rarest of rare” situations, life sentence is effective deterrence and more suitable to building a humane society.”

“Ultimately the only way to tackle rape and other forms of violence against women in India is to combat the embedded culture of male dominance and power that routinely uses violence as a means to keep women under control. In a situation where women continue to be objectified and commoditized, violence against women will continue.”

“In the course of our work we have witnessed and worked with women who face multiple vulnerabilities due to their economic and social conditions, especially those belonging to Dalit communities who are either threatened not to register a complaint by more powerful castes or the police or even mistreated by the police,” Sehjo Singh said.

ActionAid India is concerned about the tens of thousands of other pending cases dealing with violence against women. There are currently more than 23,000 rape cases pending before the high courts in India, according to the law ministry and ActionAid India urges that the pace at which the Nirbhaya trial was conducted should become a benchmark for other pending cases of violence against women.

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For media queries and interviews please contact:

Ms Sehjo Singh
Mob: +91 8800 129222
Email: Sehjo.Singh@actionaid.org