Argumentative Essay Topic – Should Capital Punishment Be Abolished?

Should Capital Punishment Be Abolished? You can find Previous Year Argumentative Essay Topics asked in ICSE board exams.

Argumentative Essay Topic – Should Capital Punishment Be Abolished?

What is Capital Punishment?

  • Why it should not be abolished?
  • Social reasons: Preserves society from undesirable elements.
  • Physiological reasons: Enforces fear of law
  • It is irrevocable form of punishment, hence calls for greater care
  • Increase in crime rate in countries where it has been abolished

Should not be abolished

“An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth” is one of the oldest forms of justice, which we all today know as capital punishment. This is the severest punishment that can be given to a criminal, for indulging in a heinous crime. It entails death to the convict, either by hanging or by electric shock as done in advanced countries. Recently there has been a heated debate on this issue, for it involves taking the life of an individual – a right nobody has.

Controlling crime has become a challenge in modem times. The glorifying of violence on television and films has cast an evil spell on the younger generation. The daily newspapers are replete with horrendous crimes, that are getting worse by the day. This is further accentuated by the spurt in cases of terrorism which has claimed the lives of hundreds of innocent people.

There is therefore need for a deterrent, to restrain such elements engaged in atrocious activities. The most effective way to deal with these rogue elements, is to make capital punishment foolproof and effective, rather than abolish it.

Taking the life of a criminal is indeed inhuman and cruel. However, there is no other way to dissuade such people from committing heinous crimes. Just as we remove a rotten apple to save the basket full of apples, there is need to get rid of these unwanted elements to save the society.

One may argue that justice is fallible and innocent lives could be lost in this form of punishment. To prevent such miscarriage of justice, our legal system has devised multiple stages of trail, the final judgement coming from the Supreme Court. Our criminal laws are more humane, than they were centuries ago.

Criminals are known to circumvent the lenient and complex laws, which make them often go scot free. In such a scenario to suggest abolishing capital punishment, would remove the fear from the mind of criminals, and they would take to criminal acts.

The only argument against capital punishment is that it is irrevocable. Valuable lives could be lost if proper justice is not meted out. However, this calls for greater care and scientific investigation by investigating agencies before awarding this form of punishment.

Many western countries like Italy and Holland, have witnessed spurt in cases of murder and heinous crimes consequent to abolishing death penalty. These countries are rethinking on the same. Drawing lessons from them, there is no conceivable reason to abolish capital punishment in India.

There is however need for a thorough review of our present judicial system, to make it more transparent and dynamic. The law enforcing agencies also need to adopt a more scientific and fool proof investigating process. It is only by having a just and dynamic legal system can the criminals be promptly brought to book.

The death penalty should be awarded in the rarest of the rare case, for it is advisable to let a hundred criminals go scot free than hang an innocent person.


‘Laws grind the poor and rich men rule the law’. Discuss