Plea in Supreme Court seeks fresh interpretation of the term “juvenile”

The Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) on Thursday deferred the scheduled pronouncement of judgment on the delinquency of the minor accused in the December 16 gang-rape case in view of the pendency of a petition in the Supreme Court seeking fresh interpretation of the term “juvenile” in the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act.

Principal Magistrate Geetanjali Goel deferred pronouncement of the verdict to August 5. She also put off pronouncement of the dispositional order against the minor in the robbery case to the same date. He has been held guilty of the robbery charge.

Agreeing to hear the petition, filed by Janata Party chief Subramanian Swamy, for redefining the term “juvenile”, the Supreme Court had asked the petitioner to inform the JJB about the same. The plea is likely to come up for hearing on July 31.

Besides the minor, the four adult accused — Mukesh, Pawan Gupta, Vinay Sharma and Akshay Thakur — are being tried by a special fast-track court here. Proceedings against key accused Ram Singh have abated after his suicide in jail. The charge-sheet says the minor was the most brutal of all.

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