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The Big Picture – Trying minors as adults: Is it justified?

Summary:

  • There has been a major debate in this country for some time now about whether the juveniles indulging in serious crimes should be treated as one or as adults.
  • It is being seen that the juveniles in the age group 16 to 18 years are indulging in rapes more and more.
  • This has led the government to propose amendments to the juvenile justice act where juveniles in the age group of 16 to 18 may now be tried as adults in regular courts for any heinous crimes such as rape. However, the child right activists are opposing any such move.
  • The government’s step is being seen as a step in the right direction.
  • Some gangs have been using juveniles to commit some heinous crimes. There are many loopholes in the existing act.
  • According the amendments proposed, now the juvenile justice board has to decide whether to trial the juveniles in regular courts or not.
  • According to the data released by NCRB, 1.3% of the total murders are committed by juveniles in the age group 16 to 18.
  • 42,115 rape cases have been reported across the country in 2013. Of which 3.29% are committed by juveniles.
  • The SC, on juvenile crime, had said that the data on juvenile crime is not sufficient to warrant any change in thinking. And there is no need to panick.
  • Not all sexual molestations get reported in the country.
  • The severity and intention behind the crime should be kept in mind while trying the juveniles.
  • There are studies showing that puberty age is coming down.
  • According to the statistics, in the last two years the heinous crimes have increased by 137% by juveniles.
  • The juvenile justice act was initially made and brought into line with the international convention on the subject of the juvenile justice seeking reform of how to treat the youngsters who are in crime in order to reform so that they don’t waste their rest of the life.
  • According to the amendments proposed, if a juvenile is accused under IPC then the juvenile cannot be awarded death sentence.
  • Sometimes kids become hardened criminals because of the existing structure.
  • A fresh look at the juvenile justice homes is needed. They are also overcrowded.