Mithu vs State of Punjab
Mithu vs State of Punjab is a leading case on Indian Penal Code section 303.
In Mithu vs State of Punjab AIR 1983 SC 473, Supreme Court struck down the section 303 of Indian Penal Code as unconstitutional on the ground that the classification between persons who commit murder whilst under the sentence of the imprisonment and those who commit murder whils they were not under the sentence of life imprisonment fothe purspose of making the sentence of death mandatory in the case of the former class and optional in the latter class under a sentence of life imprisonment in jail commit murder he must be awarded sentence of death. But under section 302 if a person commits murder he may be awarded either the sentence of death or the sentence of life imprisonment. The discretion as to which sentence is to be awarded is to be exercised by the courts which will determine the matter on the nature of offences committed by an accused. This judicial discretion is not available to a life convict under section 303 of Indian Penal Code.