The Supreme Court has reiterated that a sentence of imprisonment for life means rigorous imprisonment for life.
A bench comprising Justices L Nageswara Rao and BR Gavai held so while disposing two special leave petitions, in which the court had issued a limited notice on the question of propriety of specifying rigorous imprisonment while imposing life sentence.
The special leave petitions were filed challenging two judgments of High Courts which upheld the conviction and sentence of petitioners for the offence of murder under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code.
The bench noted that the issue has been settled in Naib Singh v. State of Punjab & Ors (1983) 2 SCC 454.
By taking into account the earlier judgments of in Pandit Kishori Lal v. King Emperor AIR 1945 PC 64 and Gopal Vinayak Godse v. State of Maharashtra 1961 3 SCR 440, the Court in Naib Singh's case held that the sentence of imprisonment for life has to be equated to rigorous imprisonment for life. The law laid down by this Court in Naib Singh's was followed Court in three judgments Dilpesh Balchandra Panchal v. State of Gujarat, Sat Pal alias Sadhu v. State of Haryana (1992) 4 SCC 172 and Mohd. Munna v. Union of India (1992) 4 SCC 172.
"In view of the authoritative pronouncements of this Court on the issues that arise for consideration in these SLPs, there is no need to re-examine the limited point for which notice was issued", the bench observed while dismissing the SLPs.
Title : Md.Alfaz Ali v State of Assam
Citation : LL 2021 SC 452