Age determination of juvenile offenders shall be completed within 15 days: HC

‘IO shall ensure that ossification test is conducted, report is obtained and filed before the Juvenile Justice Board’

November 07, 2021 02:38 am | Updated 02:40 am IST - New Delhi

The Delhi High Court has directed that the process of age determination of a juvenile in conflict with law shall be completed within 15 days of filing of documents and ossification test by the Investigating Officer (IO) of a case.

The High Court said the IO shall ensure that the ossification test in relation to the juvenile is completed, a report is obtained and filed before the Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) within 15 days from the date the test is ordered by the board.

“In all cases pertaining to juveniles in conflict with law, regardless of the nature of offences alleged, the JJB shall ensure that the process of age-determination of the juvenile is completed within 15 days from the filing of documents relating to proof of age/ossification test report by the IO, as the case may be,” a Bench of Justices Siddharth Mridul and Anup Jairam Bhambhani said.

The High Court issued various directions for further streamlining the process of inquiries relating to juveniles and made it clear that they should be scrupulously complied with by all the authorities concerned.

The Bench was dealing with various issues pertaining to the interpretation and effective implementation of some provisions of the Juvenile Justice Act.

The court granted four weeks’ time to the State to apprise it of the number of cases where inquiries are pending in each JJB here against juveniles for a period between six months to one year, along with the date of institution of the inquiry and the date of the first production in each case.

The court said the information shall preferably include the rehabilitation plan/ individual care plan for each child or juvenile.

It listed the matter for further consideration on December 14.

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