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Ajay Sura, TNN | Mar 30, 2013, 12.01AM IST
CHANDIGARH: Against the backdrop of a raging debate on the age of juvenile offenders following the Nirbhaya rape, the Punjab and Haryana high court has held that benefits and privileges of juveniles should not be accorded to minors involved in monstrous crimes merely because of their biological age. Instead, it should be premised on the ability of offenders to understand the consequences of their actions.
"It is the advancement of the mental faculty of juvenile accused, which would suggest whether he is an adult or a juvenile," the HC held while recommending a specialized examination of minors by experts who can evaluate their ability to segregate good and bad to show his/her maturity or immaturity to answer for the deeds.
Justice Mahesh Grover of the Punjab and Haryana high court passed this judgment while dismissing the bail petition of a minor, a class VII student, who had allegedly raped two girls of class IX and X of his own school. The verdict came last week and a copy of the judgment was made available on Friday.