CHENNAI: The problem of child crime like other social problems is linked to imperfections and maladjustment of our society, said the Madras High Court while setting aside three years of detention awarded to a teen by a Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) for impregnating a girl elder to him.
“Juveniles involved in crimes are not criminals. In fact, they are victims of society in some cases. Juvenile delinquency can be stopped at an early stage, provided special care is taken in home and school,” Justice AD Jagadish Chandira said on Friday while passing orders on a petition filed by the boy.
Parents and teachers play a major role. Instead of labelling them as criminals or delinquents, importance must be given to understand the needs of children and give them scope for modification. Rather than a punitive approach, it is necessary to apply a liberal approach to reform and rehabilitate the teen, the judge said.
‘Girl’s age not ascertained properly by prosecution’
Setting aside the order of Thiruvallur district JJB dated March 17, 2021, to detain the boy for three years at a special home, the judge pointed out to incidents of severe and irresponsible behaviour of school students that go viral on social media.
The case is related to a love affair between a 15-year-old boy and a 17-year-old girl. When her mother warned against such affair, the girl moved to her relative’s house where the boy convinced her saying that her mother would agree to their marriage if they had sexual relationship.
The girl became pregnant in 2019. Later, the girl’s mother lodged a complained. The judge in his ruling said the age of the girl was not ascertained properly by the prosecution. Therefore, it would be unsafe to concur with the board on its finding that the petitioner has committed an offence punishable under the provisions of Pocso Act.