Pradyuman murder: Why is the juvenile being tried as an adult accused
The Juvenile Justice Board in its order said that the accused in the Pradyuman Thakur murder case be tried as an adult. This would mean that the accused, a minor would be tried in a full-fledged court under the provisions of the Indian Penal Code.
The decision to try him as an accused was taken by the Board following a petition by the father of the deceased. In his application, Varun Thakur said that the murder committed by the 16 year old accused was chilling, horrific, serious and monstrous in nature. Hence he be tried as an adult the father also said in his application.
Before the Board was also a social background report. It was stated in the report that the 16 year old is aggressive in nature and he had also allegedly planned on poisoning the school's water tank.
Prior to the amendment to the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Bill, a minor was defined as someone below the age of 18. However following the Nirbhaya gang rape and murder case of 2012, there was an uproar to have the law amended.
One of the accused in the case who incidentally was the most violent was just a few months short of turning 18. This gave him the benefit of not being tried before a full fledged court. He was released from a correction home after three years. The other accused are still facing trial.
The government then decided to amend the JJ Act. The bill allowed for juveniles in the age group of 16 and 18 to be tried as adults in case of heinous crimes. A heinous crime is defined as one that attracts imprisonment of seven years or more.
In the Pradyuman murder case the offence falls under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code (murder). Section 302 provides for imprisonment for life or death.
Pradyuman Thakur (7) was brutally murdered on September 8 in the washroom of Ryan International School, Gurugram. The police had initially booked the bus conductor. However the CBI which took over the probe said that the conductor had no role to play and it was the 16 year old who is alleged to have committed the murder.