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JJ Act | Proceedings Against Child In Conflict With Law Cannot Be Joint With Adult Accused: Punjab & Haryana High Court

Drishti Yadav
25 July 2022 4:15 AM GMT
JJ Act | Proceedings Against Child In Conflict With Law Cannot Be Joint With Adult Accused: Punjab & Haryana High Court
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The Punjab and Haryana High Court recently held that there can be no joint proceedings of a 'child in conflict with law' with a person who is not a juvenile. The bench comprising Justice Vinod S. Bhardwaj observed that in terms of Juvenile Justice (Care And Protection Of Children) Act, 2000 (applicable to the present Petitioner-accused), any order could only have been passed by...

The Punjab and Haryana High Court recently held that there can be no joint proceedings of a 'child in conflict with law' with a person who is not a juvenile.

The bench comprising Justice Vinod S. Bhardwaj observed that in terms of Juvenile Justice (Care And Protection Of Children) Act, 2000 (applicable to the present Petitioner-accused), any order could only have been passed by the Juvenile Justice Board and not the Magistrate Court.

The court was dealing with an application under Section 482 CrPC seeking to set aside an order declaring the Petitioner-accused a proclaimed offender. The Petitioner was booked under Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 325 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of IPC.

Allegedly, the Petitioner along with 20-25 persons came on various vehicles carrying weapons and caused injuries to the complainant. The petitioner was allegedly armed with a kirpan and is alleged to have participated in the commission of offence along with other co-accused. No injury was however attributed to the petitioner.

As far as the order of proclamation of the petitioner is concerned, the court noted that mandatory period of 30 days as prescribed under Section 82 CrPC had not elapsed.

The provision stipulates that if any Court has reason to believe that any person against whom a warrant has been issued by it has absconded or is concealing himself, such Court may publish a written proclamation requiring him to appear at a specified place and at a specified time not less than thirty days from the date of publishing such proclamation.

The factual aspect is not in dispute that the publication of the proclamation was effected on 15.12.2018 and that mandatory period of 30 days had not elapsed on 21.12.2018 and the case was adjourned solely for the said reason to 18.01.2019 when the order in question was issued.

As the offence in question was allegedly committed in 2013, the provisions of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act, 2000 as amended were applicable and the petitioner who was less than 15 years old as on the date of commission of offence would fall under the definition of 'Juvenile in conflict with law', Court added.

It further noted that a conjoint reading of Sections 2 (k), 2 (l), 2 (p), 15 and 18 of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act, 2000 clearly shows that there can be no joint proceedings of a 'juvenile in conflict with law' with a person who is not a juvenile. Therefore, order could only have been passed by the Juvenile Justice Board constituted under Chapter II of Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act, 2000 and the procedure contemplated therein was required to be followed.

Since, the said procedure was not adopted while passing the order declaring petitioner as 'proclaimed person', the same was held to be without jurisdiction.

Considering it from either of the perspective, the court noted the order passed under Section 82 (1) Cr.P.C was in violation of the statutory procedure prescribed under CrPC. Moreover, the said order was without authority since the juvenility of the petitioner was not a subject matter of dispute.

In view of the above, the court allowed the petition and set aside the impugned order vide which the petitioner was declared as proclaimed offender.

Case Title: SADHU SINGH VERSUS STATE OF PUNJAB AND OTHERS

Citation : 2022 LiveLaw (PH) 203

Click Here To Read/Download Order


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