NHRC opposed the new Juvenile Justice Bill which has lowered the age of juvenile from 18years to 16 years.
Statements of NHRC opposing the bill
- Most teenagers below 16 years are still in learning stage and are unware of the crime being done by them. If such teens are sent to jail, their entire lives will be stuck in this viscous cycle.
- Teens belonging to poor family are much innocent than those belongs to rich families. But some cities can be excluded from this.
About Juvenile Justice Bill
1. The Bill replaces the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000. It addresses children in conflict with law and children in need of care and protection.
2. The Bill permits juveniles between the ages of 16-18 years to be tried as adults for heinous offences. Also, any 16-18 year old, who commits a lesser, i.e., serious offence, may be tried as an adult only if he is apprehended after the age of 21 years.
3. Juvenile Justice Boards (JJB) and Child Welfare Committees (CWC) will be constituted in each district. The JJB will conduct a preliminary inquiry to determine whether a juvenile offender is to be sent for rehabilitation or be tried as an adult. The CWC will determine institutional care for children in need of care and protection.
4. Eligibility of adoptive parents and the procedure for adoption have been included in the Bill.
5. Penalties for cruelty against a child, offering a narcotic substance to a child, and abduction or selling a child have been prescribed.