Iran: Annual report on the death penalty 2017

IRAN HUMAN RIGHTS (MARCH 13, 2018): The 10th annual report on the death penalty in Iran by Iran Human Rights (IHR) and ECPM shows that in 2017 at least 517 people were executed in the Islamic Republic of Iran. 
This number is comparable with the execution figures in 2016 and confirms the relative reduction in the use of the death penalty compared to the period between 2010 and 2015. 
Nevertheless, with an average of more than one execution every day and more than one execution per one million inhabitants in 2017, Iran remained the country with the highest number of executions per capita.
2017 Annual Report at a Glance:
At least 517 people were executed in 2017, an average of more than one execution per day111 executions (21%) were announced by official sources.Approximately 79% of all executions included in the 2017 report, i.e. 406 executions, were not announced by the authorities.At least 240 people (46% of all executions) were executed for murder charges - 98 more than in 2016.At le…

India's SC halts execution of Vikram and Jasbir Singh

The Supreme Court today put on hold till further order the execution of Vikram Singh alias Vicky and Jasbir Singh, both sentenced to death for the kidnapping and murder of Abhi Verma alias Harry, a student of Hoshiarpur's DAV School, in February 2005. 

A 3-member Bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra passed the order after hearing arguments on fresh petitions by the 2 convicts, contending that the evidence against them should be re-appreciated in the light of an apex court judgment allowing admissibility of electronic evidence. The Bench, which included Justices R Banumathi and Ashok Bhushan, reserved its ruling. 

Arguing for Vicky, senior counsel KTS Tulsi said a recorded telephonic conversation pertaining to the ransom demand had confirmed the voice of Jasbir, not of his client, and as such it could not be used against him. He also pleaded that Vicky's fingerprints on a car used for kidnapping Abhi should not be relied upon as it was his car and was supposed to have his fingerprints. Also, there was confusion over the colour of the car identified by witnesses. 

Additional Advocate General V Madhukar and complainant's counsel Abhishek Singh, however, pleaded that there was no apparent error in the verdicts of the Supreme Court, High Court and lower courts and even if the 3 objections raised by the convicts were allowed, other available evidence was sufficient to justify the death penalty. 

The SC had rejected the convicts' appeals, besides their review and curative petitions. Subsequently, the President rejected their mercy pleas, prompting them to approach the SC with new reasons. In Patiala, the jail authorities had made arrangements for executing the death warrants (for October 25) with Meerut jail hangman Pawan reaching the city a few days ago. 

Meanwhile, the Punjab and Haryana HC has deferred till November 3 hearing on a petition for commuting the convicts' death sentence. 

Source: tribuneindia.com, October 25, 2016

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