Colombo, January 31, 2011
Quite a large number of cases of innocent persons being executed for alleged crimes they had not committed have been reported from the US, UK, Australia and many other countries.
No such cases are reported from my country. As a legal practitioner, I can confidently state that my country is not an extraordinary exception. Instances of miscarriage of justice are not reported due to lack of sufficient research.
Supposedly guilty convicts are hanged or otherwise killed by the state. Since state is the agent of its citizens, blame falls squarely on all citizens for such a heinous crime.
In my story on October 24, 2010, under the caption ‘Incredible but true: innocent man hanged', I recounted how the Attorney General of Victoria in Australia Rob Hulls apologetically handed over the skeletal remains of such a poor, innocent man, hanged and buried nearly 90 years ago, to his descending family members on last October 18.
Also refer to my stories ‘Another innocent man executed in Texas' (November 13) and ‘Where court went wrong, innocent man convicted of murder' (January 20).
I am not attempting here to catalogue such cases since it will take a volume, for which Allvoices is not the place.
The DNA profiling technique was invented by Sir Alec Jeffreys of the University of Leicester in the UK as recently as 1984.
In the US alone, more than 15 death row inmates have been exonerated and released through DNA evidence since 1992. That fact would suffice to imagine the gravity and magnitude of the heinousness of death penalty worldwide.
Are you still for death penalty?