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Report No. 35

F. Different kinds of punishment in Hindu Law

The different kinds of punishment prescribed by the Hindu Law, and some of the principles on which they were directed to be administered, have been thus described by Dr. P.N. Sen.1 "Yajnavalkya speaks of four classes of punishment, viz., censure, rebuke, pecuniary punishment and corporal punishment, and says that these should be used either separately or jointly according to the nature of the crime.

Of these, mere censure was the lightest form of punishment and rebuke came after it, pecuniary punishment included fine and forfeiture of property and corporal punishment included imprisonment, banishment, branding, cutting of offending limbs, and lastly death sentence. It goes without saying that the measure of punishment depended chiefly on the gravity of the offence; if the offence be not very serious, the punishment must be light, while if the offence be serious the punishment must be severe too."

1. Dr. P.N. Sen Hindu Jurisprudence, (Tagore Law Lectures, 1909), (1918 Edn.) pp. 342-243.

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