Main theme of law is not to punish people rather to stay away from crime.

Main theme of law is not to punish people rather to stay away from crime.


Every human are social being. As we tend to live within a society we need to follow certain rules and principles. These principles vary place to place, culture to culture. In one society some issues are common, but in another society it could be offensive. As society grows over time, people name those rules and regulation as law which is now in written form. Law decides what people can do and cannot do. If a person breaks law, that person has to accept certain punishment no matter what is that person’s position in the society. Law also mentions what specific punishments a person have to accept for each kind of crime. Low is just to protect people and control people’s behavior to maintain a peaceful society.

Law is created to keep people safe from crime and give justice. When a person breaks law, he has to accept punishment according to the severity of the crime. Thus when a person thinks about breaking a law he will think twice.  These laws are created with the intension to keep people stay away from crime not to punish people who break law.

This essay talks about how law was created, why it was created, and the main theme of law that are existing in our society. First we try to figure out how law evolves in our society. Than we try to find out why the need of law evolve and finally we try to find out the main theme of each law by discussing some common crime and law against those crime and how their implementation makes sure that law is created to stay away people from crime.   .

History of Law

The history of law is closely connected to the development of civilization. Ancient Egyptian law, dating as far back as 3000 BC, contained a civil code that was probably broken into twelve books. It was based on the concept of Ma’at, characterized by tradition, rhetorical speech, social equality and impartiality.[1][2] By the 22nd century BC, the ancient Sumerian ruler Ur-Nammu had formulated the first law code, which consisted of casuistic statements (“if … then …”). Around 1760 BC, King Hammurabi further developed Babylonian law, by codifying and inscribing it in stone. Hammurabi placed several copies of his law code throughout the kingdom of Babylon as stelae, for the entire public to see; this became known as the Codex Hammurabi. The most intact copy of these stelae was discovered in the 19th century by British Assyriologists, and has since been fully transliterated and translated into various languages, including English, German, and French.[3]

Ancient India and China represent distinct traditions of law, and have historically had independent schools of legal theory and practice. The Arthashastra, probably compiled around 100 AD (although it contains older material), and the Manusmriti (c. 100–300 AD) were foundational treatises in India, and comprise texts considered authoritative legal guidance.[4] Manu’s central philosophy was tolerance and Pluralism, and was cited across Southeast Asia.[5] This Hindu tradition, along with Islamic law, was supplanted by the common law when India became part of the British Empire.[6]

1.        Théodoridés. “law”. Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of Ancient Egypt.

2.        VerSteeg, Law in ancient Egypt

3.        Richardson, Hammurabi’s Laws, 11

4.        For discussion of the composition and dating of these sources, see Olivelle, Manu’s Code of Law, 18-25

5.        Glenn, Legal Traditions of the World, 276

6.        Glenn, Legal Traditions of the World, 273

Main Theme of Law

Laws are created to protect individual’s rights and give justice to those who were victims. Law does not just to punish people. It protects people from criminals. Terrorism, killing, robbing destroy the bindings of society. Without law it is very hard to maintain human rights. It just provides financial security and insures safety. The people who take advantage of other people need to be guided with laws. Any selfish act to harm other people or threats of other people’s rights should be protected. The only way to protect these is to follow laws. Law brings equal states of human rights to all. With the law the government will be able to control crimes. Everyone one will be controlled by laws and benefits should be same. No one should be able to use laws for individual’s profits.

Every law has a different aspects but the theme is same. Some law protects human rights, some protects people’s lives, and some protect children. Some laws are created to protect women, and some to protect counties from other countries. People’s wealth is also protected by laws. There several laws that we use every day and we follow. These are the guidelines which help us to have a better life.

When a person commits a murder his punishment according to Bangladeshi Law is death punishment or lifetime jail.[7] Not only Bangladesh but there is some others countries like Afghanistan, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Bahrain, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Botswana, Chad, China, Comoros, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cuba, Dominica, Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Guinea, Guyana, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Lesotho, Libya, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nigeria, North Korea, Oman,

7.        Penal code 1860, section 132, 194, 302, 307, 396

Pakistan, Palestinian Authority, Qatar etc. have the same punishment for murder case.[8]The United States is the only westernized democracy, and one of the few democracies worldwide, to not have abolished the death penalty. [9] It seems that these countries are very cruel to the criminals. Different organizations like Amnesty International are continuously raising voice against the death punishment. But if we look more carefully than it will be extremely clear, why countries use death punishment for the murderers. Main thing is government of these countries wants to set an example to the others that if you dare to do so; you have to face the same punishment that this murderer had to accept. In a way, this law is created to stay away people from crime.

Terrorism in the name of Islam is increasing day by day. It was mainly started by Al-Qaeda in 2001 by attacking Twin tower of America.[10] Later it spread to Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iraq. In 2006, terrorism in the name of Islam started in Bangladesh by the Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB). [11] Government of Bangladesh successfully arrested those criminals and with the help of the law they were punished and their main leaders had to accept death punishment. In this case punishment was not the main issue but the issue was to set an example in front of the people thus they can keep themselves away from this types of crime.

Rape is one of most common crime all over the world. 1.3 women (ages 18 and over) in the United States are forcibly raped each minute. That translates to 78 per hour, 1,871 per day, or 683,000 per year. [12] In the United States, a rape is reported every five minutes.[13]

8.        Deborah White, pros & cons of capital punishment and death punishment

9.        Andrew Miller, Electronic version, Review – Beyond Repair? American death penalty.

10.     “Bin Laden claims responsibility for 9/11″. CBC News.”al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden appeared in a new message aired on an Arabic TV station Friday night, for the first time claiming direct responsibility for the 2001 attacks against the United States.”

11.     The Daily Prothom Alo, 26th August, 2006, see page 3.

12.     D.G. Kilpatrick, C.N. Edmunds, & A. Seymour. 1992. Rape in America: A Report to the Nation. Arlington VA: National Victim Center.

13.     FBI Uniform Crime Report, 1997.

The rate of rape in Bangladesh is also high.  Bangladesh Government is trying hardly to save woman and children by tightening the laws over the years but still the problems exists. This is because of the misinterpretation of Islamic laws and implementation by so-called village leaders. Those leaders also got involved in so many scams. But the implementation of death punishment for rape and sexual assault decreased the rate of rape in recent years. After the implementation of the punishment government able to make the situation under control. Even in this scenario, if carefully observed, the main theme was not to punish the criminal rather to punish the crime which makes other peoples to stay away from the crime.

Acid crime is most common in less developed countries like Bangladesh, India and Pakistan. Women are the most sufferer of this crime. Acid criminals throw acid to the women whenever they don’t accept the criminals love proposal, sex proposal or other bad proposals.[14] Sometimes criminals throw acid because of land problem or family problem. Unfortunately number of acid crime is much high in Bangladesh compare to other countries in the world.  The most recent statistics available from the Acid Survivors Foundation (ASF) stated that, most victim of acid violence are between the ages of 18 – 22 and 25 – 30 and from poorer socio-economic backgrounds.[15] In 2004 more than 300 persons nationwide were victimized by acid violence according to Odhikar (A coalitions of human right organization). Among them 191 were women, 65 men and 66 children.[16] Bangladesh government took great initiatives against the acid violence and increased the punishment to death sentence. This initiative works well. According to ASF the result is following

14.     Md. Mahabubul hoque, Thesis on Human Rights. See pg. 142

15.     Acid throwing situation in Bangladesh, Acid Survivors Foundation’s Annual Report 2009. See pg. 32

16.     Odhikar, Annual Report 2004. See pg. 81

Period Number of Incidents Number of Survivors
2002 367 490
2003 335 411
2004 266 325
2005 217 272
2006 180 221
2007 155 192
2008 137 179
2009 116 146

*Acid attack statistics by ASF

From the chart is clear that, after the implementation of death punishment for acid crime, number of incidents decreased dramatically. In 2002 numbers of incidents were 367 but in 2009 this number decreased to 116 only.[17] This statistics again proves that main theme of law is to stay away people from crime.


Laws are just like a guide lines to a person. How to leave life within the rules that is main purpose of law. Punishment is a result of the law not the other face of law. If someone thinks about breaking any law then the person should think about the punishments several times. After breaking laws punishments should be make the person understand that he made a mistake and he is never going to do that again.

17.     Statistics of Acid Crime in Bangladesh, Acid Survivors Foundation. Annual Report 2009. See pg. 128

Without any confession if law just keeps on charging with punishments, it will not help the society. It will be distracted from the main purpose of creating laws. To control the crime law enforcement has to be strike. If the laws are strong then people will have fear to do any crimes. This fear will keep them away from crime which is the main purpose of law. The results of breaking laws should be clear to everyone so that all people are bound to follow the rules. If the laws are not imposed then people will not follow the rules. They will engage themselves with crimes. Maybe not all people will do crime but all will break the bond of the society. No one will respect others’ rights and take advantage of any possible ways. But this is never going to be a main motto of law. Main motto of law is to stay away people from crime by setting up example among them.


Acid Throwing Situation in Bangladesh 2009, Acid Survivors Foundation, retrieved 3rd

October, 2010, <>.

Acid Survivors Foundation, 2009. Annual Report 2009. Dhaka

Alex D.B. , (2010, January 26). 101 Lashes to Rape Victim: Bangladesh Outdoes Saudi Arabia.

Retrived 5th October,2010, from


Asian Human Rights Commission. (August 23, 2010). BANGLADESH: Death penalty continues

despite a flawed criminal justice system. Retrieved 5th October,2010.


“Bin Laden claims responsibility for 9/11”. CBC News. October 29, 2004. Retrieved January 11,

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Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden appeared in a new message aired on an Arabic TV station

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the United States.”

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suicide missions. Oxford University Press.

Keppel, Gilles; Milelli, Jean-Pierre and Ghazaleh, Pascale (2008). Al Qaeda in its own words.

Harvard University Press.

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