Juvenile Delinquency & Juvenile Justice Act

Refers to a large variety of disapproved behavior of children & adolescent which the society does not approve of, & for which some kind of punishment or corrective measure is justified in the public interest.

It covers a multitude of different violations of legal and social norms, from minor offences to serious crimes, committed by juveniles.

Causes – Personality Traits – Feeling of insecurity, fear, lack of self-control, emotional conflict etc. + Broken homes, relations between parents + School and Peer group relations + Movies – Cinema and Television, Music. 

Consequences based on past records of Juvenile Delinquency

  • Lack of good economic opportunities and stable future.
  • Low social status, may be looked down upon by the society
  • Increase in crime rates – present delinquencies if not corrected may fuel further cases of unacceptable behavior

 


Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015

  • Addresses children in conflict with law and children in need of care and protection
  • Special provisions for offenders committing heinous offences in the age group of 16-18 years
  • Juvenile Justice Boards (JJB) and Child Welfare Committees (CWC) will be constituted in each district
  • CWC will determine institutional care for children in need of care and protection
  • JJB will conduct a preliminary inquiry to determine whether a juvenile offender is to be sent for rehabilitation or be tried as an adult
  • CARA was given statutory status to enable it to perform its function more effectively – would help in streamlining adoption procedures children
  • Offences committed against children under this law –
  • use of child by militant groups,
  • offences against disabled children
  • Kidnapping and abduction of children
  • sale and procurement of children for any purpose including illegal adoption, corporal punishment in child care institutions

 

Critical Analysis 

  • Juvenile homes in India are yet to acquire the expertise to undertake activities like counselling, behaviour modification therapy and psychiatric support
  • Critics argue that the current law does not act as deterrence for juveniles committing heinous crimes
  • Activists cite the evidence of adult prisons not offering a reformatory experience for inmates
  • Violates the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child to treat every child under the age of 18 as equal

 


Adoption Regulations 2017 by CARA 

Adoption is a solution for both childless couples and the homeless children. It can be an alternative option to surrogacy which is considered to be exploitative.

  • Intercountry and intra-country adoption procedures have been defined clearly
  • CARA will report & facilitate all adoptions under the JJ Act, 2015
  • For safeguards, CARA would maintain adoption records and ensure post-adoption follow up
  • Currently only biological parents or adoptive parents are recognized leaving out the step parent of any legal responsibility. The regulation Defines the step parent legally
  • Allows birth certificate of the adopted child to have adoptive parents name on it.
  • District Child protection Unit
  • Couples with more than three children shall not be eligible for adoption except in special needs
  • It makes the adopted children legal heirs in matters of inheritance of property

 

These regulations will help in streamlining the process of adoption, & will lay timelines for stakeholders to clear the adoption procedure, along with enforcement powers.

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