Convicts’ mental status and gallows

Can a convict on death row, subsequently developing mental illness of one form or the other, be justified to be hanged all goes against the basic tenets of the justice as such a state of one’s health must, as a natural corollary, save one from going to gallows.
In a landmark judgment, a three Judges Bench headed by Justice NV Ramana came in as a messiah for a condemned prisoner due to his suffering from such an ailment and was instead awarded a jail term for the remainder of his life. It therefore has set precedence and a legal guidance in respect of such people who were condemned but developed severe mental disorders post conviction as they would now be spared from the hangman’s noose. Such an illness would be a sufficient ground as mitigating factor in respect of the capital punishment. The entire issue raised complex and intricate legal, social and health related questions which connects such illness and the crime and how culpability could be established. The Supreme Court, therefore has clarified and explained the issue without any ambiguities to guide the interpreters of law over the subject. Now, it is again an academic issue whether even life imprisonment was justified to such a person as the very purpose of awarding punishment was to make the convict realise the consequences of the violation of the law. How could a mental patient realise that? That could be merely more of an academic nature rather than of a legal one.