However detestable the crime would be, a Juvenile remains a Juvenile : Bombay HC
Two boys aged 17.5 and 16.5 respectively allegedly committed the crime of murder of a three year old girl. The Juvenile Justice Board while invoking Section 15 of the Juvenile Justice Act 2015 started trying the elder boy as if he were an adult when the crime was committed, the reason for invoking Section 15 was that the crime committed by the accused was of very serious nature and shocked the souls of the people. Appeal was also filled against this impugned decision by the boy and also by the state which was rejected by the Sessions Court, thus appeal arrived to the Bombay High Court.
The Bombay High Court looked into the Social Investigation Report and Mental Health Report. and observed that the Juvenile Justice Board had mechanically believed these reports without analyzing the accused’s case on its own.While looking into the contents of the above mentioned section the court answered them all in affirmative. But while saying the same the court said that just because a section allows a Juvenile to be treated as an adult for heinous crimes committed by him , the same does not mean that the legislature intended to include all these children for adult punishment. The rigor of this section should be smoothed and it should only be applied in exceptional circumstances.
Therefore Justice Dama Seshadrii Naidu of the Bombay High Court concluded that no child should be condemned unless his fate is foreordained by his own destructive acts. So the said order of treating the elder accused as an adult was set aside and both of the accused were now to be treated as Juveniles.