Sentencing Policy: An Invigoration that Indian Criminal Jurisprudence is in need

Prakhar Dubey

The rate of crime is increasing alarmingly and to cater to the need we require a just criminal justice system on which reliance can be placed upon. Presently, the Indian Criminal Justice System believes in the idea of sentencing and punishment but there have been many debates to decide what can be termed as just punishment as it heavily depends upon the judicial discretion of judges. This paper begins with an explanation of what is a sentencing policy with next in order is the explanation of the use of power in awarding punishment which totally depends upon the judicial reasoning and discretion that can lead to some person being faced with an irreparable injury. The author of this paper wants to basically talk about the context of India where we don’t have a codified sentencing policy and why there is an urgent requirement for our legislature to draft such a policy concerning the same. India’s reformative approach towards punishment has been discussed by the author in the later part of the paper followed by an argument that Model Prison Reform 2016 of the UK can be referred to for drafting Indian sentencing policy. The author has highlighted the doctrine of vagueness which is there in USA jurisprudence and Coroners Justice Act 2009 which is derived from English Jurisprudence from which reference can be taken for India. This paper also discusses the need for a sentencing council.

At last, the author has made an attempt to answer the question “does having a sentencing policy bring uniformity in punishment or not” and “what would be the results of lack of consistency in punishment as this may result in higher offences in future”.

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