Manmeet Singh's Profile and details
I am B.A.LL.B (Hon's) final year of LL.M at Himachal Pradesh University
Comparative Study of Juvenile Delinquency in India, U.K. and U.S.A; The Role of International Agencies in Juvenile Delinquency
The Juvenile Delinquency problem involves millions of youth. It has been estimated that maximum number of all our youths have engaged in Juvenile Delinquency behavior at one time or another. Of course, many youths are never processed through the Juvenile Justice system, but this does not diminish the importance or impact of the problem. Many approaches have been developed to study the Delinquency problem, but it still remains a complex and difficult area.
Our approach is threefold. History, theory, and research are emphasize as essential ingredients for an adequate assessment of the delinquency problem. We develop a classification scheme for theory and critically assess current theory in the light of delinquency research. The emphasis on theory and research dose not mean, that institutional efforts for control, treatment, rehabilitation, and prevention are ignored.
We attempted to bring together, integrate, and make available in a text some of the excellent and often specialized work that has appeared in recent years in the disciple called Juvenile Delinquency.
The concept of Juvenile Delinquency is new, but the youthful behavior to which it refers is century old. The term was not coined to describe a new type of behavior but rather signaled important developments in the approach to treatment of Juvenile offenders. The ideas and rational behind the separation of child and adults for punishment of prohibited behavior or rehabilitation evolved over many centuries. Early codes of law provided prohibitions and prescribed punishment for child offenders, and although these early codes bear little outward remblance to the juvenile delinquency codes of the twentieth century, some of their basic underlying principles are still being reflected in modern statutes.
It has often remarked that historical accounts of child crime do not indicate the concept or scope of modern juvenile delinquency. It is true that history may not determine what should be contained in present codes or correctional practice, indicating where the field has been, where it is, and, through examination of trends, where it is going.
The prevalent problem in modern societies is the deterioration of moral character among the youth. One particular set of situations involving the youth is that in which the youth is caught up in delinquency. It has been observed that the tendency among youth people to commit crime and indulge in anti – social activities is increasing. Juvenile Delinquency involves wrong doing by a child or a young person, who is under an age specified by statute. Waywardness or incorrigibility in juvenile may be termed delinquency. Delinquency is simply the first step on the road to adult crimes or it is a gate – way to adult criminality. It concerns us because; it is a sign part of danger. One can easily say that today’s delinquent child will be tomarrow’s criminal. If we control delinquency among children, we shall be controlling future criminals.
Meaning of Juvenile Delinquency
Etymologically, the term' Delinquency’ has been derived from Latin word‘Delinquer’which means‘to omit’.The Romans used the term to refer to the failure of a person to perform the assigned task or duty. It wasWilliam Coxsonwho in 1484,used the term ‘delinquent’ to describe a person found guilty of customary offence. The word also found in Shakespearean famous play‘ Macbeth', in 1605.In simpler words it may be said that delinquency is a form of behavior or rather misbehavior or deviation from the generally accepted norms of conduct in the society. The word “Juvenile Delinquency” has been differently interpreted by different penologists. Generally speaking the term refers to a large variety of disapproved behavior of children and adolescents which the society does not approve of, and for which some kind of admonishment, punishment or corrective measure is justified in the public interest. It may therefore be inferred that a juvenile is an adolescent person between childhood and manhood or womanhood, as the case may be, who indulges in some sort of anti – social behavior, which, if not checked, may turn him into a potential offender.
Delinquency is a kind of abnormality when an individual deviates from the course of normal social life. His behavior is called “Delinquency”. When a juvenile below an age specified under a statute exhibits behavior which may prove to be dangerous to society and/or to himself he may be called a Juvenile Delinquent. Juvenile Delinquents are those offenders including boys and girls who are normally under 16 years of age. A Juvenile Delinquent is a young person incorrigible or habitually disobedient.
Definition of Juvenile Delinquency
Expressing his views on Juvenile Delinquency,Albert Cohen, observed that the only possible definition of delinquency is one that relates to the behavior in question to some set of rules. The rules themselves are heterogeneous collections of regulations, some common to all communities and others only to be found in one or two.Caldwellprefers to leave the term vague and includes within it all acts of children which tend them to be pooled indiscriminately as wards of the State.
Kratcoski Couplerightly pointed out that, “broadly considered, juvenile delinquency could mean any type of behavior by those socially defined as juvenile (non – adult) that violates the norm (standard of proper behavior) set by the controlling group”. In narrower sense, on the other hand it means, “any action by someone designated as a juvenile that would make such a young person to action by the Juvenile Court”.
Prof. W.C. Recklessof the Ohio State University has brought out the triangular locational problem of defining delinquency. He said, “Criminal and Delinquent behavior has been located in a society as a social problem. It has also been located in a behavior perspective, in answer to the question as to what types of behavior becomes delinquency and crime. There remains one other basic location, namely, the location of crime delinquency in a system of law and the location of law in a system of social values and norms”.
Indian Definition given in the Children Act, 1960of ‘Juvenile Delinquency’, is ‘a Child who has been found to have committed an offence’. In the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000,the term ‘delinquent juvenile’, used in earlier Juvenile Justice Act, 1986,has been substituted by the words ‘juvenile in conflict with law’.It is therefore, obvious that every conduct prohibited by statute is not to be taken as an act of delinquency. Instead, the conduct which tends to constitute an offence, not only from the legal standpoint but also from the angle of social norms and values will be included within the meaning of the term ‘delinquency’. Similarly, the children who incorrigible, uncontrollable, destitute or orphans, who need active support and care of the community and who were termed as ‘neglected children’ under the repealed Juvenile Justice Act, 1986,have been called as ‘children in need of care an protection’, under Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000which came into force on December 30, 2000. Under the Act, ’juvenile’ or ‘child’ means a person who has not completed 18 years of age, be he boy or girl.
Act of Delinquency may include
1.Running away from home without the permission of parents.
2.Habitual behavior beyond the control of parents.
3.Spending time idly beyond limits.
4.Use of vulgar language.
5.Wandering about rail road’s, streets market places.
6.Visiting gambling centers.
7.Committing sexual offences.
8.Shop – lifting
9.Stealing etc. Juvenile may do such activities single or through a gang.
Causes of Juvenile Delinquency
The various factors which lead to Juvenile Delinquency are as follows;
i. Adolescence Instability
The biological psychological and sociological factors are important in adolescent behavior. Puberty or physical maturity is also an important factor. The intolerance against restrictions appears in this age. The child in this age wants to maintain his own identity; fashions; dress, language, dance, food, and play are also attractions of this age. The problem of adolescence is not much in the societies which are less fluid because the elders always keep their eyes on their children during the transition period i.e., in the age of adolescent. The problem becomes more when the adolescents are not kept in containment and their growth is not chasted.
ii. Uncongenial Home
The juvenile delinquency in some cases is the result of uncongenial home atmosphere. The behavior of the parents with the children and the behavior of parents among themselves are of vital concern in moulding the child psychology from the very beginning. The way the child is nursed is very important throughout his life and not only during the immaturity of age. The families where parents observe virtuous path, the children also tend to become virtuous.
iii. Ecological Approach
Sociologists, mainly in the last four decades, were increasingly interested in applying ecological factor in order to understand socially deviant behavior like delinquency. Ecology means, the effect of physical surroundings especially the soil climate and sunlight, on the growth and development of organisms. Undoubtedly, ecological approach for our purpose includes the effect of the neighborhood, going school etc. on human character formation.
iv. Associational Impact
When the child starts to move outside his family, he comes in contact with various classes of persons of all ages and both the genders. He develops a definite circle of association outside the home and in the school also. The associational impaxt on the child is very important. He adapts the culture of the group to which he is associated. If he falls in bad association, he starts to behave accordingly. If the parents are negligent in keeping their children in discipline, the children may suffer irreparable throughout the whole period of life. They may develop delinquency and that may ultimately turn into criminality with maturity of age.
Poverty is the cause of delinquency and so of juvenile delinquency. When the children see others enjoying the life with comforts and better living, the discontentment and consequently the desire to have these things by hook or crook develops giving birth to delinquency. The theft and gambling generally are the starting points of it. Sometimes, the poverty is so acute in the family that the bare needs are difficult to be satisfied from the income of the parents. The children in such a situation may develop the tendency to steal things of others which if not checked timely may result in criminal advancement.
Juvenile Delinquency In India
In India, the definition of juvenile delinquency present no such problems as are faced by in the USA and some other countries. The concept is confined to the violation of ordinary penal law of the country so far as the jurisdiction of the Juvenile Court is concerned. The present law which governs the juveniles who are in conflict with law and children who are in need of care and protection is calledJuvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000.This law ha replaced the earlier law governing juveniles and which was known as Juvenile Justice Act, 1986 which was in conformity with thw UN Standard Minimum Rules for the administration of Juvenile Justice (also known as Beijing Rules, 1985).
Juvenile under the Indian Penal Code
According to Section 82up to 7 years of age there is an absolute irrefutable presumption that the child is doli incapax. This immunity is granted to the children below seven years on the pragmatic approach of the state that children below seven years are not capable hence they do not have the capacity to have the requisite mens rea. According to Section 83, if the child does not attain maturity of mind the burden of proof lies with the child. To make them liable they must attain maturity of mind and this is called “mischievous discretion” under English Law. The children of this age will have to prove that there was no maturity of mind when the act committed and therefore no mens rea.In the case ofR. vs. Krishnawhere a child of 9 years stole a silver chain and sold it in 5 annas the lower courts convicted the buyer and acquitted the child. The High Court held that in this case the child is wrongfully acquitted. In the case ofHarilal Mallick vs. State of Biharit was held that not only a proof of a child being under 12 but also it has to be proved that the child did not have enough understanding at that point of time and was immature. If no sufficient proof is laid down in front of the court to prove the immaturity of the child then it will be presumed that the child – accused intended to do what he really did. Thus in this case where a child of 12 or so used a sharp sword in killing a person along with his two brothers and no evidence either of age or immaturity or understanding was led on his behalf, thus held liable.
Juvenile Justice under Juvenile Justice Act
“Juvenile” or child means a person who has not completed eighteen years of age.The Act provides the uniform age both boys and girls where as under the Juvenile Justice Act, 1986 there was different age for boys and girls, but this law ha been replaced now.This definition is wider than the definition provided under Section 82 and 83 of the Indian Penal Code. The Act provides that no juvenile can be sentenced to death or imprisonment or committed to prison in default of payment or in default of furnishing security. The Act stipulates that the Juvenile should be sent home advice or admonition, released on probation of good conduct and placed under the care of parent or guardian or sent to a special home.
Issues of Age Determination
Age determination has been a tricky and controversial issue in Juvenile Justice. A number of cases have been decided by the court in this regard. In the context of juvenile legislation in India, a juvenile is a person who has not completed eighteen years of age. Only children below seven to twelve years of age who are sufficiently mature to understand the repercussions if their act and children between twelve to eighteen years of age can be tried under Juvenile Justice Act as children below seven years of age have been granted blanket immunity, as mentioned above, by the Indian Penal Code. The objective is not to treat such children as adults for their criminal behavior but to reform and rehabilitate them.The issue of age determination is controversial because there is no clarity on the point. Even in the case of Indian Penal Code, Section 82 & 83 talk about children below and above seven years of age but it is silent about seven year old children. Who is to determine the age bracket they fall in? Section 49 (1) of the Juvenile Justice Act, 2000 confers the power on competent authority to determine whether the person brought it is a juvenile, if he/she appears to be so. But the procedure to determine juvenility of a person cannot br relied on. The two ways to determine age of the accused are documentary evidence and medical evidence. In Jaya Mala vs. Home Secretary, Government of J&K,the apex court held that the age as ascertained by medical examination is not conclusive proof of age. It is mere opinion of the doctor and a margin of 2 years could be on either side. In another high profile case, Bhoop Ram vs. State of U.P., the court held that in case of conflict between documentary evidence and medical report, the documentary evidence will be considered to be correct. This leads one to the conclusion that all that it needs to establish and convince court that a criminal is a juvenile is documentary proof. Now documentary proof is one of the easiest thing to obtain in our country whether it is to get a license one is legally not entitled to or for furnishing age proof in the country. In such a case, even if we were to turn to medical examination, which is held not to be hundred percent conclusive proof by even medicos. By the Allahbad High Court’s own admission, a doctor is not always truthful. In Smt. Kamlesh and anr. vs. State of U.P. the court maintained that a professional witness is prone to side with a party that engages his/her services. Thus, a doctor is not always truthful. A part from the conclusive determination of age, the question of the date when age has to be taken into account has also been a matter of controversy. In Arnit Das vs. State of Bihar, overruled held that the date of commission of offence is irrelevant and it is the date of bringing the accused in the court that has to be taken into account. This was again corrected in Pratap Singh vs. State of Jharkhand where the court held that, “the reckoning date for the determination of the age of the juvenile is the date of an offence and not the date when he is produced before the authority or in the court.”
Juvenile Delinquency In United Kingdom
While handling the problem of juvenile delinquency, the English criminal justice administrators have preferred to deal with it outside the framework of criminal law. Though the problem has attracted nationwide attention, many reformists feel that delinquency among adolescents is a transient phase and will disappear as they grow older; hence they need to be tackled differently. Moved by this consideration, the English penal reformists adopted different procedure and methods for treatment of juvenile offenders in United Kingdom.
History of Juvenile Delinquency in U.K.
The UN Convention on the Rights if the child stipulates that children should be protected from custody whenever possible and when deprived of liberty should be treated with humanity and respect. In Article 37 of the convention it is stated that imprisonment of a child shall be used only as a measure of last resort and for the shortest appropriate period of time. Juvenile crime and punishment can be different from the types of punishments that are ordered in adult criminal cases. The first court established expressly for Juvenile was built in Chicago in 1899 to address the issue of juvenile crime and punishments. Juvenile crime and punishments peaked in 1994. The 1990s saw a swell of public scrutiny over the perceived juvenile crime epidemic. In an effort to crack down on juvenile crime and punishments, many state legislatures have adopted harsher laws regarding juvenile crimes. In 2002, 2.3 million juveniles was arrested for committing crimes. The 1908 Children Act created a separate and distinct system of justice board on the juvenile court; the 1993 Children and Young Persons Act formally required the court to take account of welfare consideration in all cases involving child offenders, and the 1969 Children and Young Person Act advocated the phasing out of criminal in favour of civil proceedings. England and Wales adherence to principles of children’s rights clearly does not clearly preclude the pursuit of policies with exacerbate structural inequalities and punitive institutional regimes.
Age Factors of Juvenile
A child under the age of 10 should not be arrested according to the Section 16 of the Children and Young Person Act,if a juvenile arrested and later he turns out to be below the age of 10 years he should be released immediately according to Section 34(2) of Police and Criminal Evidence Act. A Child may be only kept in police custody for 72 hours and as soon as possible the constable concerned should make arrangements for the investigations to take place. After a juvenile has been charged and if he is detained he must be brought in front of the magistrates court in accordance with the provisions of Section 46(1),as soon as is practicable and in any event, in all circumstances not later than the day of the following charge. A juvenile who has been arrested under a warrant should not be released to Schedule 6, Para 19 (b) of the Police and Criminal Evidence Act. A juvenile must not be detained in a police cell unless no other accommodation is available and the custody officer does not think it is practical to supervise him if he not placed in a cell. Section 50 of the Children and Young Person Act, 1933it has been stated that it shall be conclusively presumed that no child under the age of 10 can be guilty of an offence. Between the ages of 10 – 14 years a child is presumed not to know the difference between right and wrong and therefore incapable of committing a crime because lack of mens rea. Wrong means gravely wrong, seriously wrong, evil wrong or morally wrong. This is a reputable presumption and the burden of rebutting it is upon the prosecution as was also held in the case of J.M. vs. Runeckles. From the cases of CH vs. DDP there were five relevant principles laid down which are not contentious:
1.The presumption of doli incapax can only be rebutted by clear positive evidence that a child knew that his act was seriously wrong.
2.Evidence of the omission of the acts amounting to the offence itself is not sufficient to rebut the presumption.
3.Interviews with the child are capable of proving the necessary insight into the mental functions of the child from which inferences may be drawn to rebut the presumption.
4.The conduct of the child before or after the act may go to prove his guilt mind.
5.The older the child is and the more obviously wrong the act, the easier it will generally to prove guilt knowledge.
In IPH vs. Chief Constable of South Wales, a 11 years old boy was said to have enough knowledge that his act was causing a damage to the motor vehicle and also in the case ofJ.M. vs. Runeckleswhere a 13 year old who attacked under kid with a milk bottle, must have known that it was seriously wrong to engage in such a behavior. In the case ofDirector of Public Prosecutions vs. K & Bchildren below 14 years of age of 14 years of age were convicted for rape and indecent assault as the children were found with guilt mind leading to the mens rea. In Powell’s where a 16 years old with a previous conviction for indecent assault received six years Section 53(2) detention of rape of a 15 year old girl, illustrates the courts attempt to balance the various considerations posed by the very serious youthful offenders.
Reasons for Juvenile Committing Crimes
Over the years, criminologist have put forth a wide variety of motives for what causes crime. People who deal with young people cite the following root conditions: Poverty, Family factors, the environment, media influence, and declining social morality.
Juvenile Delinquency in United States of America
·History of Juvenile Delinquency in USA
The history of juvenile crime policy over the course of the twentieth century is a narrative about the transformation of the law’s conception of young offenders. At the dawn of the juvenile court era in the late 19thcentury, most youths were tried and punished as adults. Much had changed by 1909 when Judge Julian Mack famously proposed in a Harvard Law Review article that a juvenile offender should be treated “as a wise and merciful father handles his own child.” Like the other progressive reformers who worked to establish the juvenile court, Judge Mark viewed youths involved in crime first and foremost as children; indeed, by his account, they were no different from children who were subject to parental abuse and neglect. The early reformers envisioned a regime in which young offenders would received treatment that would cure them of their antisocial ways – a system in which criminal responsibility and punishment had no place. Because of the Juvenile Court’s rehabilitative purpose, procedures were informal and dispositions were indeterminate. The rehabilitative model of juvenile justice seemingly thrived during the first half of the 20thcentury, but it began to unravel during the 1960s. youth advocates challenged the constitutionality of informal delinquency proceedings and, in 1967, the Supreme Court agreed, holding, in re Gault, that youths in Juvenile Court have a right to an attorney and other protections that Criminal defendants receive. But the sharpest attacks on the Juvenile Court came from another direction. As youth crime rates rose during the 1980s, conservative politicians ridiculed the juvenile system and pointed to high recidivism rates as evidence that rehabilitation was a failure. According to some observers, the juvenile court may have met the needs of a simpler time when juveniles got into school yard fights, but it was not up to the task of dealing with savvy young criminals who use guns to commit serious crimes. Although in truth, the juvenile justice system had evolved considerably since the early days, its paternalistic rhetoric persisted, obscuring the changes; even to a sympathetic ear, descriptions of youth criminals as wayward children who would respond to the caring treatment of the juvenile court seemed to bear little relation to the reality of youth crime during the late 20thcentury.
in the United States where the age of majority is set by the individual States, minor usually refers to someone under the age of 18, but can be used in certain areas to define someone under the age of 21. The terms" infant”, “child”, “adolescent”, “teen”, “youth”, “juvenile”and“young person”are also used, although some jurisdictions make a legal distinction between these terms. Minor statutes carries with it special restrictions, penalties and protections that do not apply to adults. The United Nation defined “child”as an" individual below twenty – one years of age." Juvenile Delinquency then deals with children, minor or youth below 21 years of age who break laws or fails to do what law requires. The child and Youth Welfare Code, Presidential decree No. 603defines youthful offender as" one who is over 9 years but under 21 years of age at the time of the commission of the offence." A child 9 years of age or under at the time of the offence shall be exempt from criminal liability and shall be committed to the care of his/her father or mother, or nearest relative or family friend in the discretion of the court and subject to its supervision.All member states of the United Nations except the United States and Somalia have ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, 1989. According to the Convention, a child means every human being below the age of 18 years unless under the law applicable to the child, majority is attained earlier.
Causes of Juvenile Delinquency
Juvenile Delinquency continues to confound a broad range of behavioral specialists the world over. Some point to child abuse as a key factor while others suggest that child abuse alone is not a predictor of delinquency.
There are some theorists who indicate that socio – economic conditions combined with peer influences can be an enormous factor in the development of delinquent behavior. Some of the major causes of juvenile delinquency in USA are listed below:
i) Peer Influences
ii) Family Influences
iii) Race as a Factor in Delinquent Behavior
iv) Self – Esteem as a factor in Delinquent Behavior
v) Trauma and Delinquency.
Role of International Agencies In Juvenile Delinquency
Preventing Juvenile Delinquency
Violence against children endangers their fundamental human rights. It is therefore imperative to convince individuals and institutions to commit the time, money, expertise and other resources needed to address this global problem.A number of United Nations instrument reflect a preference for social rather than judicial approaches to controlling Juvenile Delinquency.The Riyadh Guidelinesassert that the prevention of Juvenile Delinquency is an essential part of overall crime prevention in Society,and the United Nation Standard Minimum Rules for the Administration of Juvenile Justice (The Beijing Rules) recommend instituting positive measures to strengthen a juvenile’s overall well being and reduce the need for State intervention. It is widely believed that early phase intervention represent the best approach to preventing juvenile delinquency. Prevention requires individual, group and organizational efforts aimed at keeping adolescents from breaking the law. Various countries use different methods of discourage delinquent and criminal behavior. Some focus on punitive prevention intended to frighten potential offenders by making sure they understand the possibility of severe punishment, or action may be taken to prevent recurrent crime, which includes explaining the negative aspects of an offence to a delinquent and attempting to reconcile offenders and their victims. Early preventive work is being carried out in several areas. Some of the most promising approaches, programmes and initiatives are described in some detail below. Within the economic sector, professional development programmes are being set up to provide alternatives for income generation.
Supply adolescents and young people with increased economic opportunities, professional training and education, new workplaces and assistance in organizing business can help prevent youth involvement in delinquent activities. Educational programmes can help prevent youth involvement in delinquent activities. Educational programmes are helping young people learn how to engage in positive self – appraisal, deal with conflict, and control aggression. The programmes debunk the myth of gang glamour and help young people find alternatives to illegal behavior. Some work with troubled youth to help them develop the social and cognitive skills as a matter of course. In the United States law – enforcement agencies, schools, local communities and parents of adolescents are involved in these programmes.
Recreation and youth development activities are directly encouraged in the Riyadh Guidelines: “A wide range of recreational facilities and services of particular interest to young persons should be established and made easily accessible to them. ”In a number of towns in the United States the establishment of basketball programmes for adolescents led to a 60% decrease in crime rates. Researchers at Columbia University in New York found that having a Boy or Girl Club in a public housing project the level of crime by an average of 13%. In Stevenage, a town in the United Kingdom where a large youth centre and playground were built and several youth clubs organized, young people have largely avoid delinquent activities. Often it is possible to reduce the level of Juvenile Delinquency by changing an urban environment, altering the physical features through architectural and landscape planning and providing opportunities to engage young people’s interest. A research study conducted in a town in the United States revealed that most of the activities of juvenile delinquency groups were concentrated around the town’s only park. The layout of the park was redesigned to create many more leisure and recreational alternatives for juveniles and their parents. The number of positive afternoon activities held in schools and parks was also increased. All of these measures led to a considerable reduction in juvenile delinquency; in the United States juvenile crime, including violent offences, peaks at around 3 pm, generally right after school lets out.
Recently, greater attention has been given to the role and responsibility of local communities in dealing with juvenile delinquency. There are programmes designed to train group and juvenile delinquency. There are programmes designed to train groups and individual representatives of local communities in which juvenile delinquency has increased to informally control youth and include young people in constructive activities. The idea that young people can and should work in partnership with adults to improve conditions in their communities has gained currency in the past decade. Young people are being asked to sit on boards, submit ideas and support community efforts through structured (sometimes required) volunteering.
A promising development in efforts to prevent juvenile delinquency and crime is the involvement of NGO’s and volunteers (Students and pensioners, along with well – known and authority figures such as sportsmen, politicians and public figures) in social work with adolescents. Generally, programmes for preventing gang delinquency should endeavour to integrate children and youth into organized group activities. This can be achieved through social service agencies or organizations such as the YMCA, YWCA, Girl Guides and Boy Scouts, as well as independent activities also serve this purpose. Cooperative between various agents of prevention work is becoming increasingly important. Multisectoral prevention initiatives designed and implemented by entire communities are the most effective, in particular those that build on the strengths and interests of youth rather than focusing only on their problems or vehicles or deficits. In one city in the United States law enforcement officers, human service agency representatives and local citizens forged a partnership to combat crime in 10 high – crime neighborhoods. The initiative – which included the establishment of new athletic leagues for young people, a youth forum for teens to speak out on community problems, and various other prevention measures – led to a 29% drop in crime in the targeted neighborhoods and a citywide reduction in violent crime. Institutional programmes aimed at providing social and psychological support for individuals and group include camps, group homes, alternative schools and shelters. Provided within this context are educational, behavioral and psychological evaluation and diagnostics; health attention and assignment to medical facilities; individual educational planning; individual, group and parent counseling; and the organization of leisure activities. The family, as the primary institution of socialization, appears to play the most important role in the prevention of child and juvenile delinquency. The most impressive prevention efforts focus on the families of troubled youth, including those young people with serious behavior problems. In the United States, when parent management training was providing to the parents of problem children aged 3 – 8 years, the children fared far better than those in a control group assigned to a waiting list for the programme. Overall, between two – third and three – fourth of the children in the programme achieved clinically significant change and returned to a normal range of behavioral functioning.
In this context special attention must be given to street children and to children and adolescents who have lost their families (or their ties to them) during armed conflicts and have thus had no appropriate family surveillance. The majority of programmes serving street children are remedial in nature, as they operate on an adhoc basis, providing food, clothing and occasionally shelter and health services. These initiatives, which provide symptomatic treatment, have to be complemented by programmes that also address the cause of “streetism”. Special programmes are needed to tackle problem of unaccompanied and homeless children, including rehabilitation schemes that take children off the streets.
The International Juvenile Justice Observatory (IJJO)
IJJO is an organizations that provides information, communication, debates, analysis and proposal concerning juvenile justice as well as children or young people who have social difficulties, behavioral problems or are in conflict with the law. The mission of the International Juvenile Justice Observatory is to “contribute a international and inter – disciplinary vision of juvenile justice in order to create a future for minors and young people all over the world who are in situations of exclusion as a result of infringements of the law”. The IJJO aims at promoting international development strategies to create necessary policies, legislations and intervention methods with regard to global juvenile justice that is universally applicable in the world. The IJJO promotes and works towards the provisions of major international conventions and laws regarding juvenile justice such as UNCRC and UN Rules for the protection of Juvenile.
The IJJO has specific objectives
·To develop an international forum for discussion of research, interventions, and legislation in order to address the problem of juvenile delinquency.
·To promote international relations regarding different ways to of addressing the problem: legal, psychological, criminological, social educational, cultural, police, medical, etc.
·To promote analysis at all level, globally, nationally and locally, of issues concerning young people in conflict with law.
·To create alternate and changing solutions to problems in the field of juvenile justice.
·To contribute to the improvement of legislation, education, justice, police, health care and social issues.
·To create a knowledge space which is universally applicable and hence reach other to professionals, institutes and organizations by means of databases, conferences, workshops and seminars.
·To provide support and information to developing countries so that they may create a healthy juvenile justice system.
·To promote the formation of an worldwide network of juvenile justice observers.
·To create awareness about commitment to solving issues relating to young offenders.
·To promote and organize international gatherings which seeks to sharing and widening the base of knowledge regarding juvenile justice.
United Nations Guidelines for the Prevention of Juvenile Delinquency and its Impact on India….
Adopted and proclaimed by General Assembly resolution 45/112 of 14 December 1990.
1. Fundamental Principles
·The prevention of juvenile delinquency is an essential part of crime prevention in society. By engaging in lawful, socially useful activities and adopting a humanistic orientation towards society and outlook on life, young persons can develop non – criminogenic attitudes.
·The successful prevention of juvenile delinquency requires efforts on the part of the entire society to ensure the harmonious development of adolescents, with respect for and promotion of their personality from early childhood.
·For the purposes of the interpretation of the present Guidelines, a child – centered orientation should be pursued. Young persons should have an active role and partnership within society and should not be considered as mere objects of socialization or control.
·In the implementation of the present Guidelines, in accordance with national legal systems, the well – being of young persons from their early childhood should be the focus of any preventive programmes.
·The present guidelines should also be implemented in the context of the economic, social and cultural conditions prevailing in each Member State.
2. General Prevention
·Comprehensive prevention plans should be instituted at every level of Government and includes the following;
a)In – depth analysis of the problem and inventories of programmes, services, facilities and resources available.
b)Well – defined responsibilities for the qualified agencies, institutions and personnel involved in preventive efforts.
c)Mechanisms for the appropriate co – ordination of prevention efforts between governmental and non – governmental.
3. Socialization Process
·Every society should place a high priority on the needs and well – being of the families and of all its members.
·Since the families is the central unit responsible for the primary socialization of children, governmental and social efforts to preserve the integrity of the family, including the extended family, should be pursued. The society has a responsibility to assist the family in providing care and protection and in ensuring the physical and mental well – being of children. Adequate arrangements including day – care should be provided.
·Governments should establish policies that are conducive to the bringing up of children in stable and settled family environments. Families in need of assistance in the resolution of conditions of instability or conflict should be provided with requisite services.
·Government should take measures to promote families cohesion and harmony and to discourage the separation of children from their parents, unless circumstances affecting the welfare and future of the child leaves no viable alternative.
·It is important to emphasize the socialization function of the family and extended family; it is also equally important to recognize the future role; responsibilities; participation and partnership of young persons in society.
·Governments are under an obligation to make public, education accessible to all young persons.
·Education systems should seek to work together with parents, community organizations and agencies concerned with the activities of young persons.
·Young persons and their families should be informed about the law and their rights and responsibilities under the law, as well as the universal value system, including United Nations instruments.
·Education system should extend particular care and attention to young persons who are at social risk. Specialized prevention programmes and educational materials, curricula, approaches and tools should be developed and fully utilized.
·Schools should serve as resources and referral centers for the provision of medical, counseling and other services to young persons, particularly those with special needs and suffering from abuse, neglect, victimization and exploitation.
·School systems should plan, develop and implement extracurricular activities of interest to young persons, in co – operation with community group.
·Special assistance should be given to children and young persons who find it difficult to comply with attendance codes, and to “drop – outs.”
·Schools should promote policies and rules that are fair and just; students should be represented in bodies formulating school policy; including policy on discipline, and decision – making.
5. Mass Media
·The mass media should be encouraged to ensure that young persons have access to information and material from a diversity of national and international sources.
·The mass media should be encouraged to portray the positive contribution of young persons to society.
·The mass media should be encouraged to disseminate information on the existence of services, facilities and opportunities for young persons in society.
·The mass media should be aware of its extensive social role and responsibility as well as its influence, in communications relating to youthful drug and alcohol abuse. It should use its power for drug abuse prevention by relaying consistent messages through a balanced approach. Effective drug awareness campaigns at all levels should be promoted.
6. Legislation and Juvenile Justice Administration
·Governments should enact and enforce specific laws and procedures to promote and protect the rights and well – being of all young persons.
·Legislation preventing the victimization, abuse, exploitation and the use for criminal activities of children and young persons should be enacted and enforced.
·No child or young person should be subjected to harsh or degrading correction or punishment measures at, in schools or in any other institutions.
·Legislation and enforcement aimed at restricting and controlling accessibility of weapons of any sort to children and young persons should be pursued.
·Legislation should be enacted and strictly enforced to protect children and young persons from drug abuse and drug traffickers.}
Measures to be taken at the International Level (By India)
Juvenile justice should be given due attention internationally, regionally and nationally, including within the framework of the United Nations system – wide action.
There is an urgent need for close co – operation between all bodies in this field, in particular, the Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Division of the Secretariat, the Office of the United Nation High Commissioner for Human Rights/Centre for Human Rights, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the United Nations Children’s Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the International Labour Organization, the united Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and the world Health Organization. In addition, the World Bank and other international and regional financial institutions and organizations as well as non – governmental organizations and academic institutions, are invited to support the provision of advisory services and technical assistance in the field of juvenile justice. Co- operation should therefore be strengthened, in particular with regard to research, dissemination of information, training, implementation and monitoring of the Convention on the rights of Child and the use and application of existing standards, as well as with regards to the provision of technical advice and assistance programmes, for example by making use of existing international network on juvenile justice.
The effective implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, as well as the use and application of international standards through technical co – operation and advisory service programmes, should be ensured by giving particular attention to the following aspects related to protecting and promoting human rights of children in detention, strengthening the rule of law and improving the administration of the juvenile justice system;
a) Assistance in legal reform;
b) Strengthening national capacities and infrastructures;
c) Training programmes for police and other law enforcement officials, judges and magistrates, prosecutors, lawyers, administrators, prison officers and other professionals wrong in institutions where children are deprived of their liberty, health personnel, social workers, peacekeepers and other professionals concerned with juvenile justice.
d) Preparation of training manuals
e) Preparation of information and education material to inform children about their rights in juvenile justice.
Summary and Recommendations
The current situation with regards to juvenile crime and delinquency can be characterized by the following basic facts and trends;
· There has been an observed increase in violent and aggravated crimes among youth.
· The number of drug – related crimes is growing.
· The process of globalization and the greater mobility of large population groups have led to an increase in criminal activity associated with intolerance towards members of other cultures.
· The difficulties encountered by immigrants and their descendents in certain countries are sometimes related to the high levels of group crime deriving from the activities of ethnically based delinquent groups.
· In many cases juvenile crimes are linked to less obvious sources of motivation; various actions may reflect, for example, the standards of particular subordinates, teachings or traditions deriving from religious radicalism, or the compulsion to use of violence as a means of contracting gender identity. Quite often, aggressive and criminal behavior is positively portrayed in the media, creating a confused picture of acceptable societal norms within some youth subcultures.
· Quite often, aggressive and criminal behavior is positively portrayed in the media, creating a confused picture of acceptable societal norms within some youth subcultures.
· Children and adolescents in difficult circumstances constitute ready reserves for organized crime, participation in armed conflicts, human and drug trafficking and sexual exploitation.
# Brenda S. Griffin &Charles T.Griffin, Juvenile Delinquency in Perspective, Harper & Row, Publisher,pxix
# Id, atpxx.
# Id, atp5
# Beena Chaudhury, Juvenile Delinquency in India: Problems and Possible Solutions, Vol. 29, Issue 3, Civil and Military Law Journal,p228.
# N.V. Paranjape, Criminology and Penology, Allahabad Central Law Publication, 14thEd. 2009,p529
# Supranote 5
# Supranote 6
# Peter C. Kratcoski & Lucille Dunn Kratcoski, Juvenile Delinquency, 1stEd.,p2
# Walter C. reckless, The Crime Problem, Saga Publications, Indian Reprint, 1971,p55.
# Section 2(e), Children Act, 1960.
# Section 2(l) of Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000
# Section 2 (d) of Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000
# Dihllon M.K., Problem of Juvenile Delinquency in India (Delhi University, Delhi, 1997).
# S.S. Srivastava, Criminology & Criminal Administration, Allahabad, Central Law agency, 3rdEd. 2007,pp318 – 319
# Ibid, atp 319
# Supranote 5 atp232
# Supranote 17, atp319
# Ibid, atp320
# Ahmad Siddique, Criminology and Penology, Lucknow, Eastern Book Company, 6thEd.2009,p255
# Section 82, Indian Penal Code, 1860
# Section 83, Indian Penal Code, 1860
# Ayushi Mittal, Juvenile Justice: A Comparative Study with UK, available athttp://www.legalserviceindia.com/article/1319-Juvenile-Justice-A-Comparative-Study-with-U.K.html
# AIR 1965 Ker. 166
# 1978 SCR (1) 301
# Supranote 25
# Section 2(k), Juvenile Justice (Care & Protection of Children) Act, 2000
# Supranote 22, atp255.
# Supranote 25
# Adenwalla Maharukh, Child Protection and Juvenile Justice System: for Juvenile in Conflict with Law, 13, childline India Foundation, December 2006.
# Naman Gupta, Juvenile Justice – A Hard Look, available athttp://legalserviceindia.com/article/juvenile-justive-387-1.html
# AIR 1982 SC 1297
# AIR 1989 Sc 1329
# 2002 Cr.L.J. 3680
# AIR 2000 SC 2264
# AIR 2005 SC 2731
# Supranote 6, atp531
# Supranote 25
# (79 Cr. APPR 255)
# 1994 March 22
# 1987 Cr. L. J. 34 DC
# (79 Cr. APPR 255)
# Supranote 25
# Debdatta Das, Determining the Age of Juvenile – A Controversial Issue, submitted to Bureau of Police Research and Development, New Delhi,p9
# Ilanna Sharon Mandel, What Causes juvenile Delinquency? Available athttp://www.lawyershop.com/practice-areas/criminal-law/juvenile-law/history.html
# Centre for the Protection of Women and Children, Violence against women and children in Kosova, Regional Conference on Violence against Women and Children in kosova, Pristina, 30 June – 2 July 2002.
# United Nation Guidelines for the Prevention of Juvenile Delinquency (The Riyadh Guidelines)…
# ATTAR, A.D, Juvenile Delinquency: A Comparative Study. (Popular Prakashan, Bombay)
# United Nations, Centre for Social Development and Humantarian Affairs, The global situation of youth in the 1990s: trends and prospects”…..http://www.unhchr.ch/html/menu3/b/k2crc.html
# American Psychological Association , “Violence and Youth: psychology’s response”, summary report of the APA Commission on Violence and Youth (Washington, D.C., 1993).