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passion crime: your opinion

Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1874
This is real crime of passion happened in April 1959 in Bombay(Mumbai).
Background:
Location posh colony in Bombay
Characters:
Kawas Nanavati:Navy Commander in Indian Navy
Prem Ahuja:Rich businessman and friend of Nanavati for 15 years known as philandering playboy in 'high' circle.
Sylvia: British wife of Mr Nanavati,married for 8 years
Kawas and Sylvia have 3 children
Kawas would be away for long on his naval duty.Prem Ahuja and Sylvia get intimately involved.Sylvia asks Prem to marry which he declines.Kawas is aware of this,first he neglects but later looses control.
One afternoon,he meets Prem at his house.
Nanavati comes straight to the point, "Will you marry Sylvia and look after the children"
Prem:"Will I marry every woman I sleep with."
Three shots shattered the silence of the area.
Prem Ahuja is dead.
Kawas goes to Police Station and tells the truth.
On November 24, 1961 Kawas Nanavati was handed a life sentence(15 years) for the murder of Prem Ahuja, his wife Sylvia's seducer.

Question for you:
If you are judge,how much punishment do you think you will give to Kawas?
(Details about actual judgement and controversy,I will write later)

[ August 10, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]
[ August 10, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]

MH
Ashok Mash
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Joined: Oct 13, 2000
Posts: 1936
Originally posted by Arjun Shastry:
If you are judge,how much punishment do you think you will give to Kawas?


IMHO, whatever the Indian law has in it, for committing a homicide. Navanati might have his own reasons& proof, but he should have followed the correct system.


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Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1874
.All were expecting the same.But that didn't happen.
{
whatever the Indian law has in it, for committing a homicide
}
Sure,but judgement should not always be black and white.or should it be?
[ August 10, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]
fred rosenberger
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  16

I can't speak about Indian law. I can't really speak about U.S. law either, but here's what i think i do know...

Was there an opportunity to stop? if they were arguing, it got more and more heated, tempers flared and a gun was pulled and fired - crime of passion.

if they argued, Kawas went home (opportunity to calm down), found a gun, went back to find the guy... murder.

if the gun was emptied, (oportunity to stop), reloaded and fired again - murder.

This is my bare minimum understanding of the law here as relayed by my wife, a lawyer and former prosecutor in Missouri. there are a LOT more things that get considered... what they call "agrravators" and "mitigators". these are used in sentencing.

an "aggravator" is something that makes you hate the defendant more... he carved his initials in the body, he shot the victim in the kneecaps, then the elbows, then the shoulder, THEN the head... whatever.

a "mitigator" makes you feel more sympathetic towards the defendant. He was beaten as a child, his wife was in an affair, the victim was a bully who tormented him for years... things like that.

these are not used in guilt/innocense, but what kind of punishment the convicted person gets. they are heard AFTER he is convicted, but BEFORE he is sentenced.


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sunitha reghu
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Joined: Dec 12, 2002
Posts: 937
I think 15 years is reasonable. My que is why he didnt kill his wife.

Prem didnt rape his wife so wife also responsible for that.

This reminds me the movie 'faithful wife'.
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
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Posts: 13974
To add to Fred's post, why did he bring a gun in the first place? If he went there with a gun then his intention must have been to use it. The fact that he ignored it at first and only went to see Prem after a period oif time speaks ill of his intent as well. I would say that a life sentence is appropriate.


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basha khan
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Joined: Jan 26, 2002
Posts: 516
If you are judge,how much punishment do you think you will give to Kawas?

If i were the judge,I'll first check Kawas's sexual potency.If he is impotent,i'll sentence Kawas to death.else i leave Kawas free and sentense his wife to death.

---
basha
Helen Thomas
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Joined: Jan 13, 2004
Posts: 1759
That Nanavati asked Prem ahuja to marry Sylvia suggests he placed a greater value on their friendship than on his marriage. Can you tell us anything about the friendship between the two men?

Perhaps Naanvati relied on and trusted his friend to look after his family while he was away. The question doesn't seem so strange in this light.
Of course a jury should never be allowed to view it so.

What Nanvati did was the greater wrong. (DO not kill was the 6th commandement and do not commit adultery the 7th).
[ August 10, 2004: Message edited by: Helen Thomas ]

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Helen Thomas
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Posts: 1759
In such cases it really depends on the make-up of the jury as to whether a guilty verdict is reached. And also on the potential star personality of the accused. Less of the latter, and the more likely a guilty verdict.
Helen Thomas
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Posts: 1759
To see what's meant about the friendship angle and the less the jury knows of it the better, transpose the cast to Friends and see if it becomes any clearer.

Joey and Rachel have a secret affair, Ross will walks in on them kissing and is very upset.

Will Rachel(Sylvia) end up with Joey (Prem Ahuja) or Ross (Nanavatan)?
To bring matters to a head faster Ross asks Joey whether he'll marry Rachel
and look after the anticipated kids. Joey, the ever commitment-phobe, says no and Ross begins waving a revolver. We, the jury are split on egging him on to do the dastardly act and already we are thinking of a suitable Punishment to fit the Crime.
Richard Hawkes
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Joined: Jan 28, 2003
Posts: 1340
The judge should hang everyone as a warning, then hang himself.
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1874
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
To add to Fred's post, why did he bring a gun in the first place? If he went there with a gun then his intention must have been to use it. The fact that he ignored it at first and only went to see Prem after a period oif time speaks ill of his intent as well. I would say that a life sentence is appropriate.


From what they told to court
On that morning ,he asked his wife:"Do you love Prem Ahuja?"
Sylvia: Yes
Kawas: So you do not love me as before?
Sylvia: Thats correct.
He told his wife that he is going to meet Prem for discussing this matter.Sylvia expressed fear that Prem might kill Kawas.In reply Kawas told,he(Kawas) is going to shoot himself anyway ,so that does not matter.In short,Kawas had a plan to shoot Prem or himself.
After reaching, at Prem house,there was a 3 minute heated discussion(according to one lady who was present nearby in the house).
As told,court sentenced him 15 years jail.But that was not the end of the story.The community,to which Kawas belongs started heavy protest in a state asking for reducing the sentence.(kawas was infact quite influential in contacts) Kawas applied for Presidential pardon,which was accepted by governer of a state and president of India.Middle class had a sympathy for Kawas.
Sentence was reduced to 3 years.
He was released in 1964.He,his wife and kids left India for Canada.Never to return.
Richard Hawkes
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Colonel Mustard, laundry room, elephant gun, harumphh!
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1874
{
Can you tell us anything about the friendship between the two men
}
I did not find any document related to that.Only I know that they were knowing each other for 15 years.Both were from rich and influential(politically) families.

Sylvia

Nanavati

Prem

[ August 10, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]
Helen Thomas
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Joined: Jan 13, 2004
Posts: 1759
I googled a bit last night and it seems the jury was swayed considerably in favour of Nanavati. It is a landmark case in Indian judicial history because jury service was dropped. Not sure, it was very late in the night. I might have got it wrong.
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1874
{
It is a landmark case in Indian judicial history because jury service was dropped
}
Thats true.It was a landmark case.2/3 Bollywood movies were also made out of this story.
The case made such a big news continuously even after he came out of jail ,that Nanavati had to leave the country.Now Sylvia and 77 year old Nanavati are living at undisclosed location in Canada for last 40 years.
One book is also written on the story.
[ August 11, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
To add to Fred's post, why did he bring a gun in the first place? If he went there with a gun then his intention must have been to use it. The fact that he ignored it at first and only went to see Prem after a period oif time speaks ill of his intent as well. I would say that a life sentence is appropriate.


He was a naval officer, so probably the gun was part of his uniform which he would have been wearing at the time.

Add inappropriate use of government property to first degree murder and illegal discharge of a firearm.
Scrap posession of an illegal firearm.


42
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Helen Thomas:

What Nanvati did was the greater wrong. (DO not kill was the 6th commandement and do not commit adultery the 7th).


That holds true only in Christian society, remember India is Hindu.
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Richard Hawkes:
The judge should hang everyone as a warning, then hang himself.


Including the defense lawyer
In fact, loosing a trial should be an automatic hanging offense for a lawyer with no possibility for appeal.
Might cut (hmm, beheading makes that litteral...) back on the number of frivolous lawsuits
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1874
Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:

That holds true only in Christian society, remember India is Hindu.


I think regardless of the society,majority of married men on a planet,will have a sympathy for Nanavati over Ahuja.Am I right?How much punishment does he deserve is a different question.
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Arjun Shastry:

The case made such a big news continuously even after he came out of jail ,that Nanavati had to leave the country.Now Sylvia and 77 year old Nanavati are living at undisclosed location in Canada for last 40 years.
One book is also written on the story.


Which might be the greater punishment.
A professional naval officer willing to give up his wife to a friend loves his country more than his own family or life.
To be effectively exiled from that country must be terrible.

That's not to say the effective 3 year sentence for murder was enough. I've always advocated harsh penalties for murder irrespective of the reason.
And especially if a highly ranked professional military man can't control his emotions and starts shooting that's very serious, can he be trusted to keep his cool and not start a war when he sees something in intel data that he doesn't like?
Helen Thomas
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Posts: 1759
True. In Hindu society of the 1950s most expressed the sentiment that Nanavati should have shot Sylvia. Which is why they had to leave India.
Reading the current crimes of passion in India this sentiment doesn't seem to hold today. For the rich anyway.

Doesn't India use the jury system anymore then, Arjun ?
R K Singh
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Joined: Oct 15, 2001
Posts: 5371
Originally posted by Helen Thomas:
Doesn't India use the jury system anymore then, Arjun ?


I think correct question would be, "Does India has a judicial system anymore ??"


"Thanks to Indian media who has over the period of time swiped out intellectual taste from mass Indian population." - Chetan Parekh
Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1874
{
...Well, until 1959 India had a jury based system. The landmark Nanavati murder case changed it all. Kawas Nanavati, a Commander in the Indian Navy, was accused of murdering his wife's lover. The evidence was against Nanavati. However, he was a young and handsome man who the public (and parts of the press) looked upon as some sort of "hero." The jury declared him not guilty. The sessions court judge disagreed and sent the case on to the Bombay High Court, where he was found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonement. Nanavati appealed to the Supreme court, but lost.
Because the jury in the sessions court was thought to be unduly influenced by the press (notably Rusi Karanjia's Blitz) to give a verdict in favour of Nanavati, jury trials in India were abolished.
}
resource
Helen Thomas
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Posts: 1759
Really ?
Here it's not unusual to find criminals doing jury duty and they have the right to vote as well. So perhaps India is lucky in this respect.
[ August 11, 2004: Message edited by: Helen Thomas ]
Arjun Shastry
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Posts: 1874
Hats off to Gooooooooooogle!(Am I doing too much?)
Phil

Jim
[ August 11, 2004: Message edited by: Arjun Shastry ]
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Helen Thomas:
Really ?
Here it's not unusual to find criminals doing jury duty and they have the right to vote as well. So perhaps India is lucky in this respect.


Belgium is abolishing the right to vote for some classes of criminals.

While I agree that criminals should not hold citizenship status while in prison, once released they are once again members of society in most countries and should be treated no differently (except for conditions of their release like regular meetings with parole officers or maybe registration of whereabouts for multiple sex offenders) from anyone else.
Why else release them in the first place?
[ August 11, 2004: Message edited by: Max Habibi ]
fred rosenberger
lowercase baba
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  16

In fact, loosing a trial should be an automatic hanging offense for a lawyer with no possibility for appeal.

Since my wife is a laywer, i'd have some issues with this rule. she has worked as a private attorney, a prosecutor and a public defender. i'd really rather her not be hanged just because she got a B.S. case that her boss (or the State of Missouri, or the Federal Government) says she has to try.
[ August 11, 2004: Message edited by: fred rosenberger ]
Thomas Paul
mister krabs
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People are not hung. Pictures are hung. People are hanged.
fred rosenberger
lowercase baba
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Joined: Oct 02, 2003
Posts: 11153
    
  16

Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
People are not hung. Pictures are hung. People are hanged.


I didn't think this was the grammar ranch!!!

plus, it's early.
[ August 11, 2004: Message edited by: fred rosenberger ]
Helen Thomas
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Posts: 1759
While this is very loosely connected to the main topic, here goes:

A convicted serial-rapist won this week's National Lottery of �7 million netting him �6,700 a week in interest while he is behind bars. He has been moved to a higher security jail because he can now afford to escape. He won the ticket on a day or weekend release and are allowed to buy tickets as part of their rehabilitation.
Contrast this with last week's �20 million winner, 58 yr old cancer patient who vowed to use the win to help find a cure.
Manish Hatwalne
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Joined: Sep 22, 2001
Posts: 2578

Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:


That holds true only in Christian society, remember India is Hindu.


India is *NOT* hindu, it is secular. Besides, I don't think any religious commandments should dictate the law. I can say more, but I'd be nice

rgds,
- Manish
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
People are not hung. Pictures are hung. People are hanged.


Then why do so many you-know-what ads say "want to be well-hung"
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Manish Hatwalne:


India is *NOT* hindu, it is secular. Besides, I don't think any religious commandments should dictate the law. I can say more, but I'd be nice

rgds,
- Manish


The country is secular, but most of the people (including judges, jury and lawmakers) will be Hindu which is bound to influence their decisions.

I fully agree that religion should not dictate law, but the world view of the people making the law influences them on a subconscious level.
Richard Hawkes
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Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:
Then why do so many you-know-what ads say "want to be well-hung"

People get hanged-up about all sorts of stuff
KR Campbell
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Joined: Mar 26, 2004
Posts: 124
Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
People are not hung. Pictures are hung. People are hanged.


What about pheasants?
Jeroen Wenting
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Posts: 5093
I think we've now successfully turned this thread into MD
Helen Thomas
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Posts: 1759
Originally posted by KR Campbell:


What about pheasants?

Pheasants ? Did you mean peasants ?

Pheasants' necks are wrung.

[What I had before "Pheasants have their necks wrung" suggests an unconvincing degree of pheasant compliance in the process].
[ August 12, 2004: Message edited by: Helen Thomas ]
Arjun Shastry
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Posts: 1874
"The judge should hang all as a warning and then hang himself"
Richard Hawkes

.Physically dragging somebody to gallows is not so easy.Hangman job in India is only the job for which there is no competition!!

Hangman brakes down after execution
Claim for innocence
Richard Hawkes
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Posts: 1340
Does beheading hurt?
 
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