There has been recent spurt in the crimes by juveniles in India. While on one hand the widening rich-poor divide in urban areas and loss of innocence have been pushing minors from poor sections of society into the world of crime, the children from well-do –families are also increasingly stepping in the world of crime. The main factors are peer pressure, lavish lifestyles, too much freedom from the parents and even simple curiosity are leading to these dangerous trends among the youngsters in India.
In 2008 crimes by juveniles across India increased by about 9.2%over the previous year. The figure in 2007 was 8.4% more than in 2006.According to the police sources, the share of crimes committed by minors to the total crimes has increased not only in the cities but in the country as a whole. The crimes committed by minors were 1.7% of the total crimes in the country in 2005 .It increased to 1.9% and 2% in 2006 and 2007 respectively.
There are increasing cases of juveniles involved in conflict with the law. They are found largely involved in thefts; pickpocketing and burglaries. They are now forming even their own gangs.
According to NCRB figures for 2009 the largest number of cases involving juveniles were thefts followed by causing hurt and burglaries besides rioting. The primary reasons are attributed to inadequacy in juvenile care and protection schemes of government. The government homes are in bad shape where reforming of children takes a backseat and stigma stays with them.
Sometimes the very fact of being a juvenile ensures that they get only mild punishment. This is the reason why organized criminal gangs are increasingly employing juveniles. The lack of tolerance and exposure to sex and violence is creating problems within the social setup. Most of the schools are also witnessing an increase in youngsters indulging in unruly and unacceptable behavior.
According to NCRB data, 34527 juveniles were apprehended all over India during 2007 out of which 32671 were boys and 1856 were girls.
Source: The Times of India