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Discretion, Discrimination and the Rule of Law
eBook forthcoming

Discretion, Discrimination and the Rule of Law
Reforming Rape Sentencing in India


  • Date Published: August 2016
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107135628

$ 122.00

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About the Authors
  • This book addresses and analyses the rape sentencing regime in India, and demonstrates that despite law reform, the myths and stereotypes about rapists and rape victims that used to be embedded in the positive law of rape and/or in evidence law have, in many cases, merely shifted from the charging and trial stages to the sentencing stage. The book further argues that rape myths and stereotypes influence sentencing, leading to unwarranted disparity. It undertakes a theoretical examination of the purposes of punishment, the fundamentally overlapping nature of the stages of the criminal process, and the meaning of 'disparity'. The book sets forth what the sentencing guidelines for rape in India might provide, discussing factors that should be considered relevant and irrelevant in the sentencing of rape offenders. The underlying theme of the book is to bring the rule of law to criminal sentencing in India.

    • Studies all rape cases decided by the High Courts and the Supreme Court of India between 1984 and 2009
    • Argues that rape myths and stereotypes influence sentencing, leading to unwarranted disparity
    • Proposes an institutional reform – an independent sentencing commission that would establish detailed, presumptive guidelines for rape sentencing
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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 2016
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107135628
    • length: 316 pages
    • dimensions: 237 x 157 x 20 mm
    • weight: 0.57kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. An introduction to the Indian criminal justice system
    3. The law and practice of rape adjudication in India
    4. Rape sentencing: an empirical analysis
    5. Myths and stereotypes in rape prosecutions
    6. Structuring sentencing discretion: guideline models and approaches
    7. Sentencing discretion in India: the need for structuring
    8. Sentencing guidelines for rape.

  • Author

    Mrinal Satish, National Law University, Delhi
    Mrinal Satish is Associate Professor of Law and Executive Director of the Centre for Constitutional Law, Policy and Governance at the National Law University, Delhi. His research interests are sentencing, gender and the law, medical jurisprudence, empirical analysis of law, excessive undertrial and pre-trial detention, and studying the impact of the criminal justice system in its interface with vulnerable and disempowered groups.

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