India is home to the largest child population in the world. Children are recognized worldwide as supreme assets of the state and the longer term of the state lies within the hands of the kids. However, the crime rate by children under the age of 16 years has increased in the last few decades. The reason behind the increasing crime rate is due to the upbringing and the environment of the child, economic conditions, lack of education and parental care. And the most disappointing part is that children, especially under the age group of 5 to 7 years, nowadays are used as a tool for committing the crime as at this stage their mind is very innocent and can easily be influenced.
The Juvenile Justice (JJ) system is based on principles of promoting, protecting and safeguarding the rights of children. Juvenile Justice System is based on the principle of social welfare and rights of the child. The prime focus of the JJS is reformation and rehabilitation. It is to create an opportunity for the child to develop his personality. The goal is to create an egalitarian society of high order. We are bound to build good infrastructure and efficient Juvenile Justice Administration for the benefit of our efficient future resource.
This essential enactment was initiated by the Indian Parliament in 1986. In the year 2000, the Act was comprehensively revised based on
thereby clearly defining children as persons up to the age of 18 years (Section 2 (k) of the Act defines “child‘ as a person who has not completed eighteen years of age. The Act is based on the provisions of the Indian Constitution and the four broad rights defined by the UNCRC:
• Right to Survival
• Right to Protection
• Right to Development
• Right to Participation
The other basic rights of kids by the Convention of the rights of the children are outlined as the right to health and care, the right to protection from abuse, the right to protection from exploitation, right to protection from neglect, right to information, right to expression and right to nutrition, etc.
The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000, is the primary legal framework for the juvenile justice system in India. The JJ Act primarily focuses on the twin interrelated aspects of juvenile delinquency and the handling of children in need of care and protection. The JJ Amendment Act, 2006, brought substantive changes to the JJ Act, 2000. It has been enacted to provide for care, protection, development, and rehabilitation of neglected, delinquent children and includes within its ambit child labourers.
WHO criticized this Act on several grounds: initial, stating it to be retributive, not helpful. The introduction of The New Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of children), 2015, has introduced a number of exceptional changes within the existing Juvenile Law. Besides this, the paper has centred on the anticipated scenario which can arise since the New Juvenile Justice Act, 2015 are browsing with Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 and Prohibition of child wedding Act, 2006.
Central Adoption Resource Authority (CARA) has been given the status of a statutory body to enable it to perform its function more effectively streamline adoption procedures for an orphan, abandoned a1nd surrendered children.
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) is a self-ruling body to check the advancement and assurance of human rights in India. Since the beginning of the National Human Rights Commission, the predicament of adolescents who come in the class of contention with law and kids who need care and assurance was their worry. The National Human Rights Commission screens the grievances against youngsters; Projects and Programs Division and arrangement making and usage of the strategies at the national level. The National Human Rights Commission sorted out a National Conference on Juvenile Justice System in India in 2007 in New Delhi. In the Conference number of proposals and recommendations made to enhance the working of the framework in India. Concern was laid on the execution of the Act underlined on giving due care, security, development, and advancement of youngsters.
Constitutional Provisions have encouraged the developments in the field of the juvenile justice system in India. Part III and Part IV of the constitution of India which deal with “Fundamental Rights” as it guarantees Fundamental Rights to all children in the country and empowers the State to make special provisions for children and “Directive Principles of State Policy” specifically guide the State in securing the tender age of children from abuse and ensuring that children are given opportunities and facilities to develop in a healthy manner in conditions of freedom and dignity, respectively and contain special provisions with respect to care and protection of the children such as Article 15 (3), Article 21-A, Article 23, Article 39(e), Article 24, Article 39(f), Article 45, Article 47 and so on.
Disastrously a broad number of children are obstructed from securing their childhood and right to bearing and thereby they are subjected to exploitation, misuse, and abuse. Juvenile crimes are a harsh reality, and to reduce them, the Act must be effectively implemented, along with that awareness must be created. The approach and the thinking of the essential players in the system, like the officials and authorities, need to change from punitive to reformative and hence shows better results. Though the government has laid various legislations and rules to stop the incidents of juvenile crimes, the present laws on juveniles are not creating a deterrent effect on the juveniles and thus the results are not fruitful and the legislative intent is not accomplishing. Change is possible through better social, economic conditions, creation of awareness and also through a change in people’s attitudes towards juveniles. The future accomplishment of the nation depends upon how the nation’s precious human resources (children) perform and execute.