The issue of the death penalty in India and the recommendations made by the parliamentary committee regarding the proposed criminal statute.
The parliamentary committee examining the proposed criminal statute, Bharatiya Nyaya Sanhita (BNS), did not recommend abolishing the death penalty.
The standing committee on Home Affairs made a bland recommendation to leave the matter for the government to consider.
Experts and jurists submitted arguments for abolition, highlighting that trial courts were increasingly awarding death sentences while the Supreme Court was leaning away from capital punishment.
Social scientists demonstrated that the death penalty had no deterrent effect and global opinion favored its abolition.
From 2007 to 2022, the Supreme Court awarded the death penalty to only seven people, and in 2023, all death sentences were either set aside or commuted to life as they did not fall under the "rarest of rare cases."
Members who added notes of dissent to the report argue that capital punishment is not a deterrent and that life imprisonment is a more rigorous punishment and allows for reform.
They also point out that most death row convicts come from underprivileged backgrounds.
The three Bills proposing a new body of criminal law are similar to existing laws.
If the draft Bills are enacted with changes suggested by the parliamentary panel, it should be an opportunity to reconsider the need for the death penalty.
The BNS defines 'life imprisonment' as the remainder of one's natural life, and this should be the default alternative to death sentences.
The case for abolition of the death penalty will be stronger if premature release of life convicts on political grounds is stopped and life terms without remission become more common.
Remission should be a humanitarian act and not a source of political controversy.
Removing capital punishment and introducing a rational and universal remission policy would be a significant reform in the justice system.
The recent trends in inflation in India and its implications for the economy. It provides insights into consumer price inflation, wholesale prices, and core inflation. It also mentions the factors contributing to the rise in food costs and the potential impact on retail prices.
India's consumer price inflation in October was at a four-month low of 4.87%.
Wholesale prices declined year-on-year for the seventh successive month by 0.5%.
October's price rise pace represents some relief for the third successive month from July's high pace of over 7.4%.
Rural consumers still face a higher inflation rate of 5.1%.
Core inflation, which excludes energy and food costs, has e
Household services inflation dropped below 4% after several months above.
The rise in prices of vegetables eased to 2.7% in October.
Overall food costs for households stayed firm at 6.6%.
Pulses prices were up 19.4% at the wholesale level, indicating that more pass-through to retail prices is likely.
The Monetary Policy Committee of the Reserve Bank of India will meet in early December for its next review.
The committee's average inflation projection for this quarter is 5.6%, down from 6.4% in the previous quarter.
November and December may see an average inflation of 5.95%, slightly below the central bank's upper tolerance threshold.
Excluding edible oils, prices would have risen by 5.6%.
Base effects from last year, when edible oil prices spiked due to the Ukraine conflict, will start to dissipate in the coming months.
Inflation recorded in October 2022 helped cool price rise last month, but those base effects will likely fade this month.
Retail inflation eased to 5.88% in November, with the food price index rising by just 4.7%.
Households have adjusted to rising living costs by reducing discretionary spending and downsizing essential consumption.
Reluctant or budget-cramped consumers are a challenge for policymakers striving to address the economy's reliance on domestic demand.