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Juvenile bill passed by Rajya Sabha: A look at the key provisions

Juvenile bill passed by Rajya Sabha: A look at the key provisions - A day after members across parties agreed that juvenile justice bill should be considered seriously, the Parliament on Tuesday passed the important legislation.

According to the bill, those between 16 and 18 years of age will be tried as adults for heinous offences. Also, anyone between the age of 16 and 18 who commits a less serious crime may be tried as an adult if he is detained after he attains the age of 21.

At present, a juvenile accused (under 18 years) is tried by the Juvenile Justice Board and if found guilty sent to a reform home for a maximum of 3 years like in the case of the recently-released convict in the December 16, 2012, gang rape.

Giving out the details about the bill, Women and Child Development Minister Maneka Gandhi said borstals - a custodial institution for young offenders - would be developed under the proposed law to accept juveniles accused of heinous crimes.

Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said juvenile convicts should not be housed in jail with "hardened criminals" and there should be a separate place for them.

Meanwhile, Parliamentary Affairs Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu said the government had enumerated the bill several times in the monsoon session and the winter session but it could not be passed.

Communist Party of India-Marxist leader Sitaram Yechury termed it a touching move. He asked, "If tomorrow, a 15-year 11-month-old commits a crime, will you change the definition again? Today, ISIS is recruiting 14-15 year olds. Are we going to reduce the age from 18 to 16 to 14?"