Monday, December 5, 2011

No mercy for kidnappers, says SC

The Supreme Court on Monday expressed concern over increasing incidents of kidnapping of children for ransom and said trial courts must view the offence in the harshest manner and impose deterrent punishment.
A bench of Justices P Sathasivam and J Chelameswar refused to release an offender who has served more than 11 years in prison after being convicted for kidnapping a boy in 2000 in Kolkata and upheld the life imprisonment awarded to him by the trial court.
The trial court had convicted seven accused under Section 364A (kidnapping for ransom) of the Indian Penal Code and awarded life imprisonment to all. The high court acquitted three but maintained the life term awarded to the other four. One of them, Akram Khan, had appealed against the HC order before the apex court, which dismissed the petition.
Justice Sathasivam, writing the judgment for the bench, said, “Considering the alarming rise in kidnapping for ransom, the legislature in its wisdom provided for stringent sentence. Therefore, we are of the view that in those cases whoever kidnaps or abducts young children for ransom, no leniency be shown in awarding sentences, on the other hand, it must be dealt with in the harshest possible manner and an obligation rests in the courts as well.”
It said the Parliament, while enacting Section 364A to deal with cases of kidnapping for ransom, had called for imposition of deterrent punishment, irrespective of the fact whether the kidnapping resulted in killing of the victim or not. Akram Khan’s counsel argued that it was a simple case of kidnapping as no ransom money changed hands though demands had been made. He pleaded that offence of kidnapping attracted a maximum punishment of seven years imprisonment and requested the court to release his client on bail as he had already served more than 11 years.

No comments:

Post a Comment