The rights and the wrongs of death and life

Arpitpushp Chaturvedi and Utkarsh Jain

  1. Fedden, H. Romilly, Suicide, A Social and Historical Study, Peter Davies, London (1938), page 42 []
  2. Encyclopedia of Crime and Justice, Vol. IV, (1983 Edn), p.1521, Intentional taking of one’s life []
  3. Emile Durkheim, Suicide (Routledge 2005) [hereinafter A Study in Sociology]; also look at: altruistic suicide: suicide for the benefit of others in the society. []
  4. Guilty mind, Elizabeth A. Martin, ed. (2003). Oxford Dictionary of Law. Oxford: Oxford University Press. []
  5. Robert Pape, Dying to Win (Random House 2005), p.174 []
  6. Actus non facit reum nisi mens sit rea: Act without guilty mind cannot be considered as criminal. []
  7. Bindal, Amit, “Non-Culpability of Attempt to commit Suicide: A critical analysis of the States policy of wounding the wounded“, Bangalore Law Journal, 2010, p.192. []
  8. Even though the reasoning of suicide as a means on becoming one with god due to fulfillment in life is not as convincing taking into account the ground reality of the farmers of India. []
  9. P. Rathinam v. Union of India, 1994 (3) SCC 394. []
  10. Maruti Shripati Dubal v. State of Maharashtra, 1987 CriLJ 743. []
  11. Supra at footnote 8 []
  12. Gian Kaur vs The State Of Punjab, 1996 AIR 946 []
  13. Supra note 3 []
  14. Supra note 10. []
  15. R. C. Cooper v. Union of India, 1970 AIR 564, 1970 SCR (3) 530. []
  16. Supra at footnote 13. []
  17. Majumdar, Abhik, “The right to die: Indian experienceAustralian Journal of Asian Law, Vol. 6, No. 2, p. 157, 2004. []
  18. Id. []
  19. Pillai, Dr. K.N. Chandrasekharan, “Comment on Rathinam vs. Union of India” (1995) 3 SCC (jour). []
  20. Nanda Prashant, IANS, Friday March 16 2007 []
  21. Ashraf Md. Ali, “culpability of attempt to commit suicide- a legal labyrinth amidst ethical quandary” journal of indian law institute[vol. 49:4] []
  22. Olga tellis v. Bombay Municipal Corporation AIR 1986 SC 180 at 192-93 []
  23. Deem, Rich, “What Happens to Christians Who Commit Suicide? Do They Go To Heaven or Hell?“, May 11, 2011. []
  24. These are acts supported by traditional logics and practices and involve an individual to end his life knowingly himself. Not all people who commit suicide do it because they have realized their true self and are content with their achievements. These kind of people are extinct as against the other types of people who commit suicide. []
  25. Supra at footnote 5. []
  26. Kannibar J.g., “should there be a right it to commit suicide” (1993) Cri LJ 14 at 390-91 []
  27. Supra at 11 []
  28. supra at 23. “Deviation from this would amount to a sin. The sacred and holy texts of various religions discuss suicide as a sin. The Bible condemning suicide has been quoted above.” []
  29. Qur’an, Sura 4 (An-Nisa), ayat 29 []
  30. Sahih al-Bukhari, 2:23:446 []
  31. Jewish views on suicide state that suicide is forbidden by Jewish law. Judaism has traditionally viewed suicide as a serious sin. It is not seen as an acceptable alternative even if one is being forced to commit certain cardinal sins for which one must give up one’s life rather than sin. Hinduism addresses the issue in verse 3 of chapter 40 of Yajurveda which when translated means that people with self destructive tendencies live in darkness of ignorance which they cannot escape even after death. Also there is a large debate on fast unto deaths which is a clear form of attempt to suicide. It can be said that these fasts are done to improve the conditions of life as against the present situation and to assert life meaningfully than to give up. Their main objective is in resonance with the arguments I stated above. []
  32. John Stuart Mill (1859) on liberty, “Once a person dies he leaves a void in the life of his loved ones and often the lifestyles of these loved ones halt for a reasonable amount of time which effect the upcoming course of their life largely. If the victim happens to be a bread earner of the family it creates a huge setback to the family for losing the individual. The pain, loss and setbacks are harm that the society indirectly suffers due to the damage inflicted by the suicide. Thus suicide imposes harm on the society in these forms.” []
  33. Wright, Valerie (November 2010). “Deterrence in Criminal Justice: Evaluating Certainty vs. Severity of Punishment“, 13 October 2012: “Research has shown that increasing the severity of a punishment does not have much effect on crime, while increasing the certainty of punishment does have a deterrent effect. “Clearly, enhancing the severity of punishment will have little impact on people who do not believe they will be apprehended for their actions.” []
  34. Explanation 2 of this very section states that mischief can also be committed to one’s own property and inflict harm upon others. []
  35. Supra at 21 pg.16 []
  36. Supra at 19 []
  37. 1996 AIR 946 []
  38. 1994 (3) SCC 394: “But that cannot be mixed with this case as section 306 and section 309 are read into different areas. ”As regards person aiding and abetting suicide the law can be entirely different … as self-killing is conceptually different from abetting others to kill themselves” []
  39. Modi govt plans to decriminalize attempt to commit suicide, Times of India, (August 5, 2014),  []
  40. Law Commission of India, Humanization and decriminalization of attempt to suicide, Report No. 210, (October 2008) Pg. 38-39 []
  41. Sneha India, ( (Retrieved: 25/11/2014). []
  42. Report No. 210, Supra note 42 at 33 []
  43. James Fieser, EUTHANASIA, Applied Ethics: A sourcebook, ( 10/3/2010), []

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