Letters to the Editor

Published : Jan 20, 2016 12:30 IST

Juveniles & crime

Fl22 juvenile Cover
IN Victor Hugo’s memorable novel “Les Miserables”, Jean Valjean, a prison escapee, is hounded by the police officer Javert even after he had become a gentleman of dignity and compassion (Cover Story, January 22). Similarly, for most of us, someone who commits a crime is always a criminal. It was a revelation to read about the transformation Sujit underwent during his time in a juvenile home. The Juvenile Justice Bill hurriedly passed by Parliament is contrary to the spirit of Buddha and Gandhiji. I shudder to think what would have happened to Sujit if he had been sent to an adult prison. No law should be passed when emotions are running high. Why was the Bill not sent to a Select Committee of Parliament? This would have paved the way for reasoned discussion.

S.S. Rajagopalan, Chennai

WAYS should be explored to counsel teens against committing heinous crimes. There is no guarantee that the boy convicted in the Delhi rape case and released from the juvenile home after serving his sentence has been reformed. Will the government guarantee that he will not repeat the crime? Laws should be stringent so that the perpetrators of heinous crimes fear them.

Sravana Ramachandran, Udhagamanalam, Tamil Nadu

PUNISHMENTS should act as a deterrent and instil fear in the minds of offenders. A crime is a crime whether it is committed by a juvenile or an adult. The punishment should be more severe in the case of juveniles because otherwise they will think that the justice system is lenient, and that will encourage them to commit crimes. It may not be appropriate to say that the Juvenile Justice Bill was passed in haste. The Bill should have been passed immediately following the Nirbhaya case. The abnormal delay is what led to the public outrage.

Balasubramaniam Pavani, Secunderabad, Telangana

I HAVE had the opportunity to work in places such as Tirunelveli, Kanyakumari, Hyderabad and Mumbai and am of the opinion that the police patrol in Mumbai is not up to the mark. Yes, rules and regulations are vital for law and order. But, to begin with, the important thing that needs to be done is to increase the police force across the country in order to ensure the overall safety of all citizens.

P. Senthil Saravana Durai, Vazhavallan, Tamil Nadu

AS in most Western countries, juveniles aged 16 years, and even younger in some cases, who commit heinous crimes are tried and punished as adults, the amendment to India’s juvenile justice law is welcome as it will act as a deterrent. But when draconian laws have had little impact in terms of curbing heinous crimes and ending corruption, there is no doubt that it is only the lack of political will and the indifference of society that is responsible for the rise in the number of juvenile offenders. Notwithstanding the new law, it is the responsibility of the government, law- enforcement agencies and civil society to prevent juveniles from committing crimes of any nature.

K.R. Srinivasan, Secunderabad, Telangana

WITH changing times, the law on juvenile justice has rightly been changed. It is a fact that children mature faster these days and are fully aware of their acts and the consequences of them. Some people argue that at this age, juveniles have not yet acquired a sense of judgment; some psychologists maintain that children mature only by 21 or 22. I do not concur with such views and feel that more detailed research is required on these subjects.

M. Kumar, New Delhi

Civil services

THE article “Primacy at stake” (January 22) explained in detail the displeasure of the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) lobby with the Seventh Central Pay Commission (CPC) recommendations for parity in pay and promotion for all-India services. Officers of the IAS and the Indian Foreign Service (IFS) are selected from an all-India list as their brief involves a wide range of services in domestic and external affairs respectively. Officers of the Indian Police Service and Indian Forestry Service, on the other hand, have a specific service in limited areas.

The Centre should not ratify the CPC recommendations as the number of aspirants for IAS and IFS is dwindling in the face of reservation, compensation constraints and political interference. The morale of IAS and IFS officers is already at a low ebb, and if these suggestions are implemented, it will cause a mass exodus from the services.

B. Rajasekaran, Bengaluru


THE article “In the master’s service” (January 22) gave a poignant account of the bonded labour system prevailing in the rural areas of north-western Karnataka. It was shocking to learn that in this day and age people belonging to the Scheduled Caste Madiga community are being forced to work without any wages even if they have not taken a loan from their upper-caste masters. The Karnataka government should intervene and stop this slavery.

P. Vijayakumar, Madurai, Tamil Nadu

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