California: With state executions on hold, death penalty foes rethink ballot strategy

California advocates of abolishing the death penalty got a jolt of momentum in March, when Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that he would not allow any executions to take place while he was in office.
But after trying twice this decade to persuade voters to end capital punishment, they have no plans to go to the ballot again in 2020. Rather than seeking to build on Newsom’s temporary reprieve for Death Row inmates, activists are taking their own pause.
Grappling with the legacy of their two failed initiatives, advocates are reassessing their strategy and retooling their message. Natasha Minsker, a political consultant who has long been involved with abolition efforts, said the governor’s moratorium has given advocates the opportunity to do long-term planning.
“There’s this excitement and energy in our movement that we haven’t had in a long time,” Minsker said.
Newsom’s executive order caught many Californians by surprise. Although he supported the unsuccessful ballot measures to abolish t…

Hyderabad vet murder: Four accused sent to 14-day judicial custody, protestors demand death penalty

protestors gathered in front of Shadnagar police station
Police baton-charged protestors and tightened security around the Shadnagar police station to prevent violence.

Four men who were arrested in connection with the alleged gangrape and murder of a woman veterinarian near Hyderabad were sent to judicial custody for 14 days on Saturday, IANS reported. The accused were taken to Chanchalguda Central Jail.

The accused were booked under Sections 376 of the Indian Penal Code (punishment for rape), 302 (punishment for murder) and sections of the Nirbhaya Act, The News Minute reported.

Meanwhile, protestors gathered in front of Shadnagar police station and chanted slogans against the accused. 

The protestors demanded that the accused be publicly hanged. 

Police baton-charged protestors and tightened security in the area to prevent violence. 

A video showed protestors throwing slippers at police.

The accused could not be produced at a fast-track court at Mahabubnagar as the judge there was not available and also due to the situation outside the police station. 

The magistrate had to be brought for the hearing through a back door, according to IANS.

The protesters gathered outside the police station, raised slogans against the accused and demanded that the accused be handed death penalty.

"It is not enough if they are taken to court. They should be handed out the same treatment what they had done to the victim," a man said.

"If you cannot do it, hand them over to us," another man said. Police assured the agitators that they would ensure 100% conviction and requested people to cooperate with them.

Protests were also held by different student groups and others at various places in Telangana demanding severe punishment for the accused. The local bar association has said it will not offer any legal assistance to the accused.

The accused were identified as Mohammed Arif, Chintakunta Chennakeshavulu, Jollu Shiva and Jollu Naveen. Two of them are truck drivers.

The 27-year-old woman went missing late on Wednesday after the accused, who had deflated her tyres in her absence near the Shamshabad toll plaza, offered to help her. 

The woman’s sister had called the police to file a complaint on Wednesday night. 

She said that despite calling the police, officials had not searched areas near the toll plaza for her sister, whose body was found on Thursday, The New Indian Express reported. 

The woman was allegedly gangraped by the accused before being killed and set on fire.

The woman’s sister said that police had asked seemingly irrelevant questions such as whether the victim had a boyfriend, was regularly in touch with any men, and if she spoke on her phone for long periods of time. 

There was also outrage after Telangana Home Minister Mohammed Mahmood Ali asked why the woman had first called her sister, and not the police.

Source: scroll.in, Staff, November 30, 2019

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