Children Need love When they do not deserve it.
A child is born innocent but due to not getting proper care and guidance and
also for the negative social and environmental factors his mind diverge towards
We know that all children are wealth and assets of
a nation's future and a healthy environment should be provided to them so that
they can become a civilized citizen of a country. It is the responsibility of
the government and the society along with his parents to look that the child
becomes physically fit, socially active and mentally conscious equipped with
skills and do something productive for the country rather than becoming a
The children who are involved in criminal or in any illegal activity
for them the Government must correct and reform them rather than giving
punishment , for this every country have there own juvenile justice act.
Juvenile is considered as a child who has not completed a specific age mentioned
in law of the country and under that age he cannot be treated as an adult.
Different country have different age limit for juvenile.
History of Juvenile Justice
Before Nineteenth century children were considered as young adults and were
tried as an adult in court, children over the age of seven years accused of
crimes were sent to adult jail, but instead of reforming they learn more about
crimes. So for that reason many states started creating reform schools and work
farms for the children . After that in 1899 U. S made legal history by creating
first juvenile court in Chicago because they recognized that children's are not
as mature as adults and as they can be reformed into good human being.
Then on 1985 came the United Nations standard minimum rule for administration of
which states the definition of juvenile that a young person
who is under the respective legal system to be dealt with any offences, it also
states that the age of criminal responsibility of a juvenile must be determined
on the basic of the mental , emotional and intellectual integrity of the child
and the most important part was that juvenile must be kept separated from adult.
Then from 1990s many countries adopted the system of juvenile justice. On 1989
came the UN convention on the right of the child, which gave four sets of civil,
political, cultural, social and economical right to every child. Then criticism
came about children's court that the trial of a juvenile is done without lawyer,
the juvenile is not aware of there crime, In the case of 1996 Kent V. United
States the Supreme Court decided that juvenile has right to know there crime and
have a proper council. Then on 20th century Supreme Court brought more
procedural formality in the juvenile court system.
Delinquency is a action, omission, or moral behavior of juvenile which is not
permitted in the society , and when a child perform such behavior then he is
considered to be delinquent. The word delinquency has its origin from Latin word
means that to leave or to abandon
. It means children who are neglected by
the society or by their parents for which they involve in harmful and illegal
activities. When a child does any crime then it falls under the category of
The juvenile delinquency is a behavioral disorder
which is generally defined as a child trying or pretending to grow up and
act like an adult
. There are many interpretation of the term Delinquent but
the by Clyde. B. Yedder it was most well defined he said that Juvenile
delinquency refers to anti - social acts of children or of young people under
Acts of delinquency by a juvenile may be running away from home ,using
vulgar languages, committing several offences, doing illegal work, stealing
habituated to drugs and etc other unsocial behavior.
Due to this juvenile delinquency the concept of Juvenile Justice
came and recently it became an
important part of criminology. The main aim of Juvenile Delinquency is to safe
guard the right of the children and provide them care and protection also to
treat neglected and delinquent child and give them a chance to be useful citizen
of the society. In the recent years the juvenile delinquency is increasing ,
according to the census bureau in 2008 there were 1,653,000 cases in United
States which was 23.6 % more than the cases of 1990.
So to reduce Juvenile
Delinquency every country have there own Juvenile Justice act but all these acts
are based on three models:
In many countries there is a minimum age of a child above which he/she is
considered to be liable for performing any crime:
- The due procedural model
- The social welfare model
- The participatory process model
- In England and Whales for several offences children above the age of 10 years
are held criminally liable.
- In Australia a child above the age of 14 years are held responsible for any
- In U. S. A the minimum age for child to be held criminally responsible is 12
- In New York and Texas the age is 17 year, etc.
Juvenile Justice System In India
In India before 1960 there was no consistency regarding the age limit of
juvenile delinquent, every state had there own Children Act in which age limit
of a child was different,
In Bombay Children Act 1948 child means a boy not completed the age of 16 year
and a girl not completed the age of 18 year like that in U.P Children Act a
person under the age of 16 was a Child, then on 1959 India became the signatory
of the UN declaration on rights of child and on 1960 India passed the Children
Act 1960 which was applicable to whole India including Union Territory except
Jammu and Kashmir according to this Act any person not completed the age of 14
years is a child.
But then due to the Standard Minimum Rules for the
Administration of Juvenile Justice adopted by U. N countries in November 1985,
India have to repeal the Children Act 1960 and bring a new act Juvenile
Justice Act 1986
According to this act a child or juvenile was defined that
a girl who not attain the age of 18 years and a boy not attain a age of 16
years. Then on 20th November 1989 the United Nations adopted a convention on
right of child and this convention define that Child
means a human being
below the age of eighteen years.
This forced the Indian legislation to revoke
Juvenile Justice Act 1986 by the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection Act)
2000. In this the age of Juvenile for both male and female been fixed at 18
years. According to this maximum punishment can be given to a Juvenile is of 3
years but for those three years he will not be in regular jail but in a reform
home, where he can be retreated to be a responsible citizen of the country.
But Things changed due to the rise of
Juvenile Delinquency in India , children were influenced by the western world
and for there care free attitude.
Participation in illegal activities of minors increased,
There was 30% rise in crimes by juvenile in the period of 2012-14,
According to National Crime Record Bureau (NCRB) the crime of juvenile increased
by proportion from 1% to 1.2% from 2003-13,
70% of the juvenile accused of crimes were between the age of 16 to 18 years, and
The most important case (Nirbhaya Delhi Gang Rape) case of 2012 where there was
a involvement of an accused who was 6 months short to attain the age of 18 years.
These all incidents forced the Legislature to replace the Juvenile Justice (Care
and Protection) Act of 2000 with new Juvenile Justice Act of 2015 and said due
to increase of heinous crimes by Juvenile and to safeguard the right of the
victim from the crimes like rape and murder it is hard to believe that the
juvenile was not aware about the consequences.
According to this Act a Child
means a person not attain the age of 18
years but this law adopted the principal of doli incapex
�which means that a minimum age is needed for a
child to be capable to do crime, according to this law in India 7 years is
considered to be incapable for committing crime, between the age of 7 to 12
there is a presumption that innocence is given in favor of the child but but if
it is proved with evidence that the crime was committed by that child then he
can be prosecuted and according to this new bill children from 16 to 18 if
liable for any heinous crime then that child can be tried as an adult after a
general test that he/she has done the crime with his own knowledge and with
adequate understanding about the crime and it's consequences.
This act define Child into two categories:
- child in conflict with law - section-13
- child in need of care and protection - section - 14
The children who falls under the category of '' Children in Conflict with Law
''for them the competent authority is the Juvenile Justice Board, and the
children who comes under the category of '' Child in need of Care and Protection
'' for them the competent authority is Child Welfare Committee.
This law also talks about three categories of offences by juvenile:
- Heinous Offences
- Serious Offences
- Pretty Offences
Each category of offences has different punishment but a juvenile cannot be
given death penalty and cannot be given life impriosement without the
possibility of release.
Trial Process that how the Juvenile will be determined as an adult
When a juvenile of 16 to 18 years age perform any heinous crime, then the
Juvenile Justice Board perform an inquiry, to determine the Mental and physical
capacity to commit a crime and to understand it's consequences.
After that inquiry three types of order may be
recommended by JJB:
- The juvenile can be sent for counselling or community service,
- The juvenile can be sent to a observation home for temporary or for a long
- The juvenile may be referred to Children's Court to determine that whether
to try the juvenile as adult or not.
This Children's Court is a Sessions court notified under the Commission for
Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005, this court determine that whether the
juvenile will be tried as an adult or will sent to observation home for
counselling. So it's not that every juvenile will be tried as an adult it's
decided through this process of trial .
According to my view when a child perform any crime their mental state is
different that from an adult, so they must be taken proper care. Children have
flexible mindset the Government and the Society should always take care of them
with love and generosity and remove the criminal mindset and bring them back
into normal life and also provide them with all the necessary things that they
need to grow up into a responsible person of the society.
Though every country have Juvenile Justice Act and they
had also amended it to make it modern and more particular but they must properly
exercise it, the society must also support the Government to reduce juvenile
crimes . The juvenile crimes are increasing which need to be focused and the
Government must also look after the factors for which juvenile crimes are
increasing and try to resolve it.