Juveniles in conflict with law: Unaware, vulnerable & aggressive

New Delhi: As child rights experts in the city maintained that most juveniles in conflict with the law turn to a life of crime due to a lack of love, affection and guidance, the latest data from the Delhi Police has revealed that over 600 FIRs have been registered in the Capital in the first five months of this year, where juveniles were allegedly involved in the crime.

The internally compiled data revealed that about 664 FIRs and 173 Daily Diary entries were registered in which juveniles were involved in crime. In Outer district, as many as 90 FIRs were registered whereas 65 were registered in another district.

As per the data, more than 200 juveniles were apprehended for heinous offences and over 600 for non-heinous offences. One of the districts apprehended 117 juveniles for both heinous and non-heinous offences. Around 440 juveniles were released after counselling whereas more than 180 juveniles allegedly involved in heinous offences and over 230 in non-heinous offences were sent to observation homes.

Delhi Police Commissioner SN Shrivastava has directed senior officers that there should be a system of identifying the juveniles, budding criminals who are actively involved in crime for suitable correction. And in order to plan a strategy to deter minors from a life of crime, the latest statistic was requisitioned, which had data until May 27.

According to investigators, juveniles are often found to be influenced by the lavish lifestyle of gangsters and gun culture; they get attracted and enter the world of crime to earn money or just a name for themselves. They also commit street crimes like pickpocketing and snatching to fulfill their requirements of substance addiction.

During the lockdown, juveniles were involved in various crimes including robbery and murders. A community policing scheme 'YUVA' was launched by the Delhi Police, keeping in mind the problems of the youth in Delhi. "YUVA aims to wean adults and underprivileged children, who, for want of proper education and sports facilities, tend to take to crime," the police said. Delhi Police takes initiatives like organizing

sports activities, painting workshops and vocational

training for underprivileged children.

Delhi Commission for Protection of Child Rights (DCPCR) member Rita Singh said in most of the cases, children in conflict with the law (CCL) unknowingly indulge in criminal activities. "Vocational courses, counselling, non-formal education and engagement in sports activities are provided to these children for their rehabilitation," she said.

National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) member Yashwant Jain said lack of parental control, lack of love and affection and no education affects minor children. "When children lose parental guidance, then there are chances that criminals will brainwash their minds and involve them in criminal activities," he said, adding that the environment which is given to children plays an important role in stopping them from turning to crime.

According to Jain, children are mostly not aware of legal action which they can face after committing a crime. Friendship with bad elements and aggression is another reason behind committing the crime. In cases related to cybercrime, investigators have found that the children don't have awareness about the legal consequences of cybercrime. "They should be taught about the IT Act in detail," an official said. Their poor economic condition also oftentimes forces children to commit crimes.

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