Six juveniles in conflict with the law will be performing community service with six different government-run centers in their respective home towns, as a part of their one-year probation, as directed by the special CBI Court of Chandigarh.
Stating the lines, “Hate the crime and not the criminal very rightly said by Mahatma Gandhi Ji”, the Special CBI Court of Chandigarh presided by Additional District and Sessions Judge, Dr. Sushil Kumar Garg, modified the order of the Juvenile Justice Board. The Boards had sentenced the six juveniles with three years at the Juvenile Justice Home. The CBI Court brought down the period from three years to one year and further directed the juveniles to community service.
The court directed the juveniles to perform community service with the Zila Bal Kalyan Parishad, Sector 14, Panchkula, Haryana; the Government Institute for Blind (GIB) at Barel Bhawan, Jamalpur, Awana, Ludhiana (Social Security and Women and Child Development Department, Punjab); the Civil Hospital, Hisar, Haryana; the Government Senior Secondary School, Davidaspura, Sector 5, Kurukshetra, Haryana; the Department for Empowerment of Differently Abled and Senior Citizens at Bengaluru, Karnataka; and the Bal Sadan Association at Panchkula.
Meanwhile, the court, in its order, has directed that the juveniles will work for six days a week and in case they need to avail any leave from their community service on account of some urgent work or illness, they will bring it to the notice of Incharge of the institution. The court added that if the juveniles do not perform their duties and intentionally ignore the period of sentence, then they will be punished accordingly.
The CBI Court has also marked a copy of the order to the Probation Officer of Chandigarh as well as to the principal/in-charge of the six institutions, directing them to keep a tab on the activities of the juveniles and maintain attendance.
The court while pronouncing the order mentioned that, “It is pertinent to mention here that there is an age-old controversy that punishment can be in the form of reform. Hate the crime and not the criminal very rightly said by Mahatma Gandhi Ji. Whatever be the ultimate aim of punishment in the first instance, it is the imposition on an evil. Punishment, as Bentham said, is itself evil; it is a negative concept…Men commonly come out of prison worse, than they went in. Punishment tends to search for an answer but more often ends up raising more questions…”
On the Juvenile Act, the court observed that “It can be said that the object of the Juvenile Justice Act is to prevent first youthful offender, whose antecedents are not shown to be bad to send to ordinary jails, which may have the effect of making them hardened criminals, the law as a curative major provides other forms of punishment.”
“…Doctor Sithen said that is is easier to mold a child than to mend a man and that the child of today is the citizen of tomorrow. It is, therefore, essential that the criminal traits in youngsters be timely curbed. So that they do not turn into habitual offenders in their forthcoming life…Thus, the Juvenile Justice Act embodies a modern humanitarian approach of reforming with freedom rather than punishing the offenders in a strict sense…When a person has committed an error and is not a dangerous criminal, but is of weak character or has surrendered to temptation or provocation, the court encourages his sense of responsibility for the future and protects the offender from stigma and possible contamination in prison…”, read the judgment.
In November 2018, the six juveniles were held guilty in the inquiry in a forgery and cheating case of Punjab Engineering College Admission scam.
The juveniles, however, filed an appeal against the juvenile justice board order at the special CBI Court.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines