Debating death sentence; US takes Indian wallets; Dissenting hijab

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Opinion Watch

The Constitution bench of the Supreme Court has been called upon to look into the sentencing amid demands for humanizing the process to give a fair opportunity to the convicts.

The Hindu has shed spotlight in its Editorial the decision of a three-judge bench of the Supreme Court to refer to the Constitution bench to look into the issue, while arguing that the sentencing on the day of verdict limits the scope for convicts to present mitigating circumstances.

Capital punishment as laid down by the apex court is for the rarest of the rare crime. But what if rarest of the rare crimes become common, as appears to be the case in the recent years.

The Chennai-headquartered daily argued that gruesome nature of the crime as stated by several judgments is not the sole criteria for awarding the death sentence, but offenders’ socio-economic background and state of mind too are key factors.

The Hindu suggested that the arguments essentially are calling for more data on the mitigating factors with the courts before awarding sentences.

Death penalty, which is abolished in advanced countries, is seen to have deterrence value. But exponential rise in heinous crimes in the country suggests that the maladies lie somewhere else, maybe moth eaten law-enforcement system where delays of actions dilute fear of punishment.

US takes Indian wallets

Atmanirbhar Bharat is the call of the day by the government, but 81 per cent digital wallets by use has been captured by the US-based Phone Pe and Google Pay, solely benefiting from the advantages of their networks.

The Economic Times in its Editorial probes demands by the wallet operators for the rollover of the order of the National Payment Corporation to cap the market share to 30 per cent.

The daily cites the concerns of the Reserve Bank of India that market concentration is a risk as seen in the European Union and the US. The Parliamentary standing committee too will submit its report on the market behaviour of the big Tech companies.

The ET notes that the next three wallets of WhatsApp, Amazon Pay and PayTm are struggling, while burning huge cash.

While regulations cannot be substitute for bad management, big Tech monopolizing by exploiting network capabilities certainly poses risk. Additionally, while ET has not probed, the role of such wallets in allowing the Chinese loan apps to mushroom bypassing the norms of India is also a huge concern.

Dissenting hijab      

Mahsa Amini was only 22 years old. She was dragged out of a car for allegedly not wearing hijab properly, and given fatal blows that led to her death in Iran.

Now, women in Iran are burning hijab, cutting their hair in protest, and The Raisina Hills ran a story to being the spotlight on grave abuse of women in rogue nations.

The Indian Express has pleasantly found space to comment on the incident and the consequent movement in Iran against hijab, while a larger silence of the Indian intelligentsia on the issue indeed exposes their hypocrisy.

The daily referred to Iran’s national day for hijab and chastity that should sound beeping from the Stone Age, on July 12 while noting widespread women’s protest.

The Indian Express Editorial contrasting debate on hijab, as women protested in Turkey for lifting the ban on its use, while liberals have been advocating the freedom of individual choice in contrast to Iranian women’s campaign against the headscarf.

The daily stated that India too has a lesson to learn from the raging debate on hijab, while stopping abruptly to explain further. Indeed, indication is to Karnataka banning hijab in classrooms.

But is the choice really that of an individual and not ordained by a domineering order.

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