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Introduction

Crime has amassed a place in the society from a time immemorial. We may dissent (disagree) its
grasp/ clinch but we cant deny its existence. Now a day one of the most concerning problem is
juvenile crime. Even in a recent time most bewildering fact is youth are getting more attracted
towards crime sector. It is undeniable that they are the worst affected as they are still in the
initial phase of what could be a bright future. Heres the question which comes into the mind is
that are they really count as a juvenile after knowing that most of the heinous crime in todays
contemporary world committed by them? Or we rely on these words that they are only child,
they doesnt understand, their brain is not fully developed, they can't make good decisions. "Our
juvenile system is criminalizing our children. We are incarcerating kids and they don't
understand why." The idea of non-blameworthiness of juveniles dates back to approximately
2000 years ago, when both Roman and later canon (Church) law made distinction between adults
and juveniles based on the notion of age of responsibility.1 Children came to be classified as
infans, proximus infantia and proximus pubertati. Generally infans were not held criminally
responsible as we all know they are not mature enough to get the idea of the intentness/
thoughtfulness or consequences of the act, but children who attained puberty, knew the
consequences. As our law too defined, juvenile is a person who has not completed the age of
eighteen years2. Same definition has been given by the International Law, a Child means
every human being below the age of 18 years. But, should the minor treated differently for the
same crime from others as they doesnt attain the age of maturity? Or is just because of our
juvenile justice system? Crime at any age must be treated as a crime either done by juvenile or
other person. If we give a thought, is it justified to punish a person who commits grievous crime
in accordance to juvenile justice system mere because of his age? Does a 17-year-old have
less reasoning power than an 18-year-old? What great mental development
will there be in the next one year? Is he less capable of understanding the
ramifications of his actions one year before? Was the enhancement of the
age of a juvenile from 16 years to 18 years in year 2000 without any basis?
1 Juvenile Justice Juvenile Justice: A Text/Reader [Richard A. Lawrence, Craig Hemmens]
Publisher: SAGE Publications, Inc (March 13, 2008)

2 Section 2 (k) of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000
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Are they are in a position to decide what is wrong and what is right?
Juvenile .heinous crimes such as murder and gang rape. These trends were
so disturbing and also affect society as a whole as society is anguished by
such acts of juveniles. To find answer these entire set of questions, we must
have a clear insight of circumstances and reasons which compel them to
commit such heinous crimes.

Reasons for juvenile crime: Is society the reason or the family?


We all know no one is a born criminal; it is the circumstance which make him so. The sociocultural environment both inside and outside of home in which they bought up, plays a
significant role in shaping ones life and overall personality. Some of the most common causes
which are associated with Juveniles crimes are Poverty, Drug Abuse, Anti- social peer group,
Easy availability of fire arms, Abusive parents, Child sexual abuse, Family violence and Role of
Media to some extent.
However so far as India is concerned, Poverty and the effect of media, especially the socialmedia are more inclined to juveniles towards criminal activities and even the role played by
social media today which is also having a negative impact on young minds. Social Media is a
huge part of lives of everyday where if there are some advantages from the social media than on
the other hand beyond any doubt it does also plays a vital role in youth violence because of the
obscene and violent contents or materials contain in social media.
Cyber bullying phenomenon, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube have become a platform for youth
violence. A news channel covered a story where they interviewed a Chicago resident that showed
correspondents how sites were used by gang members to promote violence. It showed how gangs
used social media sites to make threats, call out rival gangs, promote violence and recruit
members. This activity led to real Stomp-Outs, real shootings, and real deaths.
Continual exposure to violence like this can have adverse effects on youth. Meta-analyses of the
unhealthy effects of media-violence have shown that youth who view media-violence on a
regular basis are more likely to exhibit antisocial behavior, ranging from imitative violent
behavior with toys to criminal violence, acceptance of violent behavior, increased feelings of
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hostility, and desensitization toward violent behavior. This information is not applicable to all
youth who view it, but imagine a young impressionable pre-teen and some other juveniles who
does get attracted towards such act may think this behavior (hostile fights) is acceptable.
Similarly social media also abet juvenile delinquency in the form of rapes or gang rapes as the
obscene videos or the contents displayed on social media instigate the juvenile especially the
illiterate ones because of which they does rape. Some even does gang rape for the sake of
entertainment or to satisfy their need after intoxication because they could not judge after getting
intoxicated the difference between the rights and wrong. With no doubt I strongly support the
notion that media does influence juvenile delinquency to some extent. The impact of mass
communication is evident in all areas of life. Juvenile crime is also affected by it, only more so
because minors lack the ability to sift out the irrational from the rational and logical view.
The other major reason behind the increase in number of juvenile crimes is the lack of guidance
which they are receving from their parents and their support. In an investigation of highdelinquency areas in New York City, Craig and Glick found three factors related to increased
likelihood of delinquency: 1) cursory or inadequate supervision by the mother or surrogate
mother; 2) capricious or bizzare strict discipline; and 3) lack of solidarity of the family.
Children are spending more and more time in front of televisions, computers, and surfing the
Internet which does even contain inappropriate things which contribute to the delinquency
problem. However we cant only blame the parents because many a time it is the child only who
listen only to their peers. We researched juvenile behavior dealing with girls and boys, and found
that girls tend to be juvenile delinquents when they lose emotional touch with whom they are
very much attached to. Most girls are arrested for depraved act of, running away, gang
involvement, and sex offenses; while most boys are arrested for vandalism, theft, assault, rape,
drugs and some other offenses.