Meaning, Nature and Scope of Life Imprisonment Punishment

  • Alok Singh
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  • Alok Singh

    Completed LL.B.(Hons.) from University of Allahabad, India

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Life Imprisonment is one of the most basic and common form of punishment. It is used not only by the court in India, but also in other countries. The critical analysis of the punishment depicts some positive and negative aspects. Due to the negative aspects, some form of relief was given in the form of remission, commutation, pardon, etc. This power rests with the court and the government. These reliefs are provided under various provisions of IPC, C.R.P.C, and Constitution. From the above provision one basic question arises is whether Life Imprisonment means Imprisonment till Life or till 14 years or till 20 years. The answer to this question is it means Imprisonment till Life. However, when the appropriate government, in its discretion decides to commute the Life Imprisonment, then it can commute it to a particular term. But this term should not exceed 14 years. Thus, the government can in its discretion commute it to 7 years, it can commute it to 11 years, or any other term, but this term should not be more than 14 years. It cannot be 15 years or 20 years, etc. Further, by Section 57, for the purpose of calculation Life Imprisonment means 20 years. Again this does not give accused the right to be released after 20 years. This 20 years is used just for calculation purpose.


Research Paper


International Journal of Legal Science and Innovation, Volume 5, Issue 2, Page 12 - 24


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