Juvenile Justice Act: Decoding 8 facts related to LAW


2024/05/24 12:23:07 IST

Why in news?

    The 17-and-a-half-year-old juvenile accused of driving a Porsche at high speeds in an inebriated state and killing two software engineers in Pune has been sent to observation home until June 5, as directed by the Juvenile Justice Board. An application to try minor as Adult in this case has been sent by police to board. Previously, JJB had granted bail to the accused on various conditions, including writing an essay, studying traffic safety norms, and undergoing de-addiction counseling.

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Father of teen booked

    The Pune Police have charged the minors businessman father and two staff of Club Blak, where the 17-year-old was allegedly served booze under sections 75 and 77 of the Juvenile Justice Act, which deal with cruelty to minors and giving them with intoxicating drugs.

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What is Juvenile Justice Act?

    The Juvenile Justice Act, 2015 had replaced the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000 to make comprehensive provisions for trying juveniles of age group 16-18 as adults in cases of heinous offences.

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Categories of Offences

    Under the act, the offences have been categorized as petty offences, serious offences, and heinous offences. The Act defines heinous offences as “heinous offences” offences for which the minimum punishment under the Indian Penal Code or any other law for the time being in force is imprisonment for seven years or more.

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Role of Juvenile Justice Board

    The nature of the crime, and whether the juvenile should be tried as a minor or a child, was to be determined by a Juvenile Justice Board. The act has prescribes to set up one or more such boards in every district that would exercise their powers and discharge functions relating to children in conflict with the law under the Act.

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Composition of the board

    A Board will be composed of two social workers chosen in a prescribed manner, at least one of whom must be a woman, and a Metropolitan Magistrate or a Judicial Magistrate of First Class, with at least three years of experience. Each Bench will have the authority granted to a Metropolitan Magistrate or, as the case may be, a Judicial Magistrate of First Class by the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.

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Special provisions

    The act specifies special provisions to tackle child offenders committing heinous offences. Section 15 of the JJ Act states that the JJB will perform an initial evaluation to determine the childs mental and physical capacity to commit the crime, their comprehension of the consequences, and the circumstances surrounding the alleged crime.

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Functions of the board

    The board functions to ensure informed participation of child and parent in every step. It uphold the childs right, ensure availability of legal aid, can adjudicate and dispose of cases of children in conflict with law, conducting inspections of jails for adults, pass order to register FIR for offences committed against any child. The Juvenile Justice Board is given the option to transfer cases of heinous offences by such children to a Children’s Court (Court of Session) after conducting the preliminary assessment.

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