Human Sacrifice and Capital Punishment


September 6, 2017

On 16th September, 2017, Project 39A organized an interdisciplinary panel discussion with a panel consisting of Ms. Rebecca John (Senior Advocate, High Court of Delhi), Dr. Felix Padel (anthropologist), and Dr. Sanjeev Jain (Psychiatrist) to critically examine the legal, cultural and psychological assumptions that courts rely on when they award the death penalty in cases involving human sacrifice.

Issues covered by the panel included the psychological foundations of criminal intent, collective delusions and their implications on criminal culpability, breaking down the rarest-of-the-rare standard in the context of ritual murder, and the psychological significance of psychological evaluations in human sacrifice cases.