Crimes by Children in Conflict with the Law – Heinousness, Acceptability, and Age of Adulthood: A Comprehensive Critique of the Present Juvenile Justice System

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Aanchal Kabra and Pratyay Panigrahi

The underlying nature of the Juvenile Justice system has undergone a substantial change with the adoption of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015. The new Act has widespread implications on the manner in which children in conflict with the law are understood and treated before the law. Apart from theoretical shifts, provisions to try certain children in conflict with the law as adults have been adopted. Moreover, the Act is in conflict with India’s international obligations, and several implementation-related issues still persist. In light of this, we propose several changes, both at the theoretical and the practical levels, to substantially reform the juvenile justice system as it stands today, such that the best interests of the children are secured.

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