Juveniles are increasingly coming under the scanner for their involvement in ghastly crimes.
Last month alone saw their involvement in four heinous crimes reported from the Capital, including the multi-crore Lajpat Nagar heist and Nido Taniam’s (also spelt as Tania) death. The juvenile involved in last year’s December 16 gang rape had been described as the most heinous of the six rapists.
‘In the Lajpat Nagar heist, the juvenile was an employee of businessman Rajesh Kalra. He was aware that his boss and partner were going to transport a huge amount of cash between Chandni Chowk, Greater Kailash and Kalkaji. He roped in members of a local gang and planned the entire heist,’ said a senior police officer.
The alleged hate killing of Tania at Lajpat Nagar also involved three juveniles. Tania had gone to meet a friend at Lajpat Nagar where he stopped at a sweet shop to ask for directions. There, he got embroiled in an altercation over racist remarks passed by the shopkeeper. Eventually he was cruelly beaten by the other shopkeepers.
Just after this incident, two women from Manipur were assaulted by men and the police suspect that a juvenile was involved in the incident. On Sunday night, five men assaulted two cousins from Manipur in Ambedkar Nagar. They had subjected the cousins to racial slurs to which they objected. Among the five involved, two were juveniles.
Police rest the blame of their rising involvement in crime on the toothless laws on juvenile delinquency. However clinical psychologist Pulkit Sharma, who was worked with juvenile delinquents, said, “These children suffer from low self-esteem. Usually, they are left to fend for themselves at a tender age. Some of them are victims of heinous crimes themselves. The influence of peer group and attraction towards the present culture of show-off are also to be blamed.”
“We need a strong structure that can hold juvenile delinquents accountable and limit their participation in the criminal acts,” he added.
Nimesh Desai, clinical psychologist at the Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences, said, “It is important to make juveniles understand the importance of respecting the boundaries of others. We need a strict, swift and a consistent legal system that can monitor their behaviour.”