- Legal Explainers (96)
Juvenile Justice Board
The Juvenile Justice Board is the body that deals with children who have been accused of committing a crime.
While no registration of an FIR is required in the case of petty and serious offences, the police are supposed to keep a record of it in the general diary along with the social background report. In the case of heinous offences, an FIR needs to be filed against a child.
Arresting a child
While arresting a child offender the police cannot handcuff or exert any force when they arrest a child and must immediately inform the parents or guardians of the child. The police officer must tell the child the location of the Juvenile Justice Board where they will be taken.
Punishment for Children
The punishments for Petty Offences and Serious Offences can include giving the child a firm warning, ordering the child to attend group counselling sessions, ordering the child to perform supervised community service, or ordering the child’s parents or guardians to pay a fine, or sending the child to a Special Home for up to 3 years.
If the Board decides that a child should be tried as an adult after a Preliminary Assessment, it sends the case to a Children’s Court. The Children’s Court may be an existing Sessions Court that deals with child-specific laws, or a special court set up to deal with crimes under the Juvenile Justice Act.
Preliminary Assessment of a child’s crime
A preliminary assessment is conducted when a heinous offence is committed by a child over the age of 16. This is an attempt to find out whether the child was mature enough to understand their action and the consequences of them when they committed the crime.
What is Free Legal Aid?
Free legal aid means providing legal services, free of cost, to certain sections of the society like a beggar, differently-abled person, etc., as and when required. This does not mean that anyone can go and ask for legal aid. You have to be eligible to apply for it.
Rehabilitation of Children
The main aim of rehabilitation is to make sure that a child can be put back under the care of their parent or guardian.
Marriage of Children
A child marriage is a marriage between the parties where either both people marrying are minors, or one of them is a child/minor.
What is Ragging?
Ragging is any physical, verbal or mental abuse committed by one student against another student belonging to an educational institute. The seniority of the student who rags or is ragged does not matter.
Types of Child Sexual Abuse
Indian law classifies the types of child sexual abuse into different types of crimes, regardless of the child’s gender .
What is Adoption?
Adoption is the process through which a prospective adoptive parent lawfully assumes the responsibility of a child.
Employing adolescents between 14-18 years
Adolescents are allowed to work in places that do non-hazardous work. These establishments that do non-hazardous work are notified by the government.
Free and Compulsory Education
The Right to Education is a fundamental right guaranteed under Article 21A of the Constitution of India, 1950. The law guaranteeing the right to education is known as the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009.
Legal services are any service with respect to a case or any other legal proceeding before any Court, authority or tribunal. Getting legal advice is also a part of legal service.
Is Covid-19 an epidemic or a disaster?
Covid-19 is both an epidemic and declared as a disaster by the Government of India under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897. By notifying Covid-19 as a disaster, the Government of India can take measures and prescribe regulations to prevent any danger or threat of any disaster.
Prohibition of Child Marriage
The law prohibits people from performing child marriages and lays down punishments for those involved in conducting the marriage.
Who can be Adopted?
Under the Hindu law and the non-religious law on adoption, certain conditions have been laid down to determine which children can be adopted.
Acts considered as Ragging
Many actions taken by students are considered to be ragging under the law. Some of the acts are mentioned herein.
Consent to Have Sex
The law does not recognize a child’s ability to give consent to have sex. This means that if an adult (above the age of 18) asks a child (below 18 years) to engage in any kind of sexual activity, and the child says yes explicitly or implies that they consent, this activity will still be considered as child sexual abuse or rape under the law.
Employing children under 14
It is illegal to employ or allow children under the age of 14 in any form of occupation.
Admission Process into Schools
All children between the ages of 6 to 14 years can get education from schools, free of cost, from the 1st standard (first class) till the 8th standard (eighth class).
Mental Health of Children
child requires admission in a mental health establishment, the nominated representative should apply to the mental health professional in charge of the establishment for the child’s admission. Informed consent of the nominated representative must be obtained after complete knowledge of the treatment and its consequences
Eligibility for Legal Aid
If you want legal aid, you will need to go to a legal service authority. Once you approach the authority, they will check whether you are eligible for legal aid and the genuineness of your case.
Conducting a Child Marriage
Anyone who performs or helps in performing a child marriage will be committing a crime. The punishment is rigorous imprisonment and a fine.
Minimum Age for Hindu Marriage
If either one of the parties is not of marriageable age, the marriage is considered a child marriage and is a voidable marriage.
Who can Adopt?
Under the non-religious law on adoption, you must meet certain conditions to be considered as a prospective adoptive parent.
Sexually Touching a Child
A person commits sexual assault on a child if they touch a child with sexual intent or force a child to touch someone else's private parts.
Consent of a minor
Sex with a girl who is below eighteen years of age (a minor) is considered as rape, even if the girl consents to have sex.
Determining age of Child
If you as an employer are unsure if the child is below 14 years or above 14 years of age, then the age of the child will be determined by a medical authority.
Different Categories of Schools
The schools given below have the responsibility to make provisions for the free and compulsory elementary education of children.
Costs in Legal Aid
There is no charge for getting an application form for free legal aid. You are not required to spend any money for either getting or submitting the application. Even expenses like Process Fees, Drafting Fees, Typing Fees, Clerkage, etc. are borne by the legal service institutions.
Parental Responsibility of their Child’s Marriage
Women cannot be punished with imprisonment for failing to prevent the child marriage from taking place, and can only be fined.
Who can Give a Child in Adoption?
Under the non-religious law on adoption, as a parent or a guardian you have the option to surrender your child.
Non-Physical Sexual Behaviour
Sexual harassment means non-physical sexual behaviour which is unwelcome to the child, including, speaking and gesturing sexually, stalking and threatening, etc.
Employers Responsibility towards Child Artists
When child artists are being employed for work, there is an obligation on the employer to fill out Form C as given in the Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986.
Denial of Admission into Schools
No child can be denied admission to a school, irrespective of the time in the academic year in which admission is sought.
Where do you go for Legal Aid
You can approach the State Legal Services Authorities, District Legal Services Authorities, Supreme Court Legal Services Committees and the High Court Legal Services Committees for applying for legal aid.
Cancelling a Child Marriage
Where a child marriage has taken place, the person who was a child at the time of marriage has an option to cancel the marriage.
Children Legally Free for Adoption
Declaring a child legally free for adoption allows such children to be put up for adoption under the non-religious law.
Sexual Penetration of a Child
When a person inserts any object or any body part into any body part of a child, or forces the child to do this with someone, it is a crime of penetrative sexual assault.
Role of Schools in preventing Child Labour
The right to education of a child applies even if the child or adolescent is working as an artist or in the family business. School has an important role in preventing child labour.
Curriculum and Evaluation Procedures in Schools
Each state government has specified various academic authorities that have laid down the curriculum and evaluation procedures. These could be the State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT) or other academic institutions of the state.
Legal Age For Smoking
If you are selling cigarettes or other tobacco products, you must ensure that the person purchasing the product(s) is above 18 years of age.
How to Apply for Legal Aid?
While applying for legal aid, you will require at least proof of identification and an affidavit proving you are eligible for legal aid.
Child Marriages Not Recognized by Law
In certain cases under the child marriage law, the marriage would be absolutely illegal and will be considered to have not occurred at all.
Types of Adoption
The non-religious law on adoption lays down certain types of adoption, although these are not specified under the Hindu law on adoption.
Blackmailing a Child and Sexual Harassment
If someone threatens a child or records any sexual act done to a child, then anyone including the parents can complain against them.
Duties of an Inspector to prevent Child Labour
The Government appoints Inspectors to make sure that there is no illegal employment and the permitted employment of adolescents is done as per the law.
Help and Support
You can reach out to the National Legal Services Authority to lodge a complaint and track your application. You can also email or call the state-wise authorities (Legal Service Authorities) given below in case of a grievance, or if you need help and support.
Children Born Out of Child Marriages
A child born out of a child marriage, irrespective of whether it has been cancelled, would be considered a legitimate child under the law.
Foeticide and Infanticide
If a sex determination procedure results in the abortion of a child, it would be a crime of foeticide. Whereas, killing or causing the death of a child after they are born is a crime known as infanticide..
Effects of Adoption
There are certain effects of adoption which arise with respect to property rights and familial connections.
The law can punish any person who uses children in any form of media (advertisements, internet, printed form, etc.) for sexual gratification.
Responsibilities while employing Child Artists
The post elaborates on the responsibilities of employer while employing child artists.
If you are not satisfied with the decision given by the relevant Legal Service Authority on your application for a grant of legal aid, an appeal to the Executive Chairman or Chairman of the relevant Legal Services Authority.
Protection for a Married Girl Child
The law offers certain protections to girls who have been married below the age of 18 years and have filed for cancelling their marriage.
Procedure for Adopting a Child from a Foreign Country by Indian Citizens (Non-Religious Law)
Under the non-religious law on adoption, you must follow certain steps to adopt a child from a foreign country as an Indian citizen.
Helping Someone Sexually Abuse a Child
When a person helps, protects, or intentionally encourages someone to sexually abuse a child, they become an abettor of child sexual abuse.
Children in Movies/TV/Sports
Children can work in movies/TV/sports and be paid for it as 'child artists'.
Responsibilities of Schools
The right to education law prescribes that the Pupil-Teacher Ratio should be maintained at 30:1 for first class to fifth class and 35:1 for sixth class to eighth class.
Filing A Noise Complaint
If any noise is being made which causes you annoyance, discomfort or any injury, then you can file a complaint with the authorities given below.
Denial/Withdrawal of Legal Aid Services
After you fill out your application for legal aid, it can be denied or accepted. It can also be withdrawn at a later stage after the application has been accepted and legal aid has been provided.
Reporting Child Marriages
Anyone can file a complaint of child marriage, including the child. It doesn't matter whether the child marriage has taken place or not.
Sexual Abuse by Another Child
If a child above 7 years of age sexually harasses or sexually assaults another child , they can be considered an abuser and punished under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015.
How can minors marry under Christian Law?
Under Christian law, a minor is defined as someone below the age of 21 years, and is not a widow or widower.
Complaining/ Grievances Regarding Child’s Education
If you face any grievance or you have a complaint regarding the education of a child, you can approach the following authorities:
Government duties against Child Labour
The Central Government has duties to ensure that child labour does not take place and that the provisions of the law are followed.
Receiving Legal Aid After Application
Once you have submitted your application for free legal aid, it will be scrutinized by the relevant Legal Services Authority to determine what is to be done. Once the scrutiny is complete, information about whether your application has been accepted/rejected will be provided to you within 7 days from the date of the receipt of the application.
Power of the Court to Stop Child Marriage
After receiving credible information, the Court can issue an order prohibiting a child marriage from being conducted.
Procedure for Adoption by Resident Indians (Non-Religious Law)
As a resident Indian, you may opt for adoption within India. Your application for adoption will go through various stages.
Child Sexual Abuse By A Family Member
When a child is sexually abused by a family member, they face a more severe punishment than someone who is not a family member since they are in a position of authority and trust to the child.
Free Meals for Children in Schools (Mid-day Meal Scheme)
The law provides that all students between the ages of six to fourteen years who enrol and attend the school studying between I to VIII classes shall be entitled to nutritious meals at no cost.
Can a pregnant minor give consent for an abortion?
The consent of a guardian is mandatory for performing an abortion on minors, i.e anyone below the age of 18 years.
Child Marriage Prohibition Officers
Child Marriage Prohibition Officers (CPMO) are appointed by the State governments to curb issues of child marriages in each State.
Procedure for Adoption by Relative (Non-Religious Law)
As a relative of a child, following the non-religious law to adopt, you can adopt both within India and also do inter-country adoptions.
Sexual Abuse By An Authority Figure
When these people commit crimes such as sexual assault or penetrative sexual assault, they will be given higher punishment for committing the same crimes.
Qualifications of Teachers
The National Council for Teacher Education prescribes the qualifications for teachers in India. One of the essential qualifications for a person to be eligible for appointment as a teacher in any of the schools is that he/she should pass the Teacher Eligibility Test (TET) which will be conducted by the appropriate Government.
Child Labour Rehabilitation cum Welfare Fund
A Child Labour Rehabilitation-cum-Welfare Fund is a fund which is established for every one or two districts. The fine paid by the employer is deposited into this Fund.
Procedure for Adoption by Step-Parent (Non-Religious Law)
As a step-parent of the child you want to adopt, you must follow the procedure given under the non-religious law on adoption.
Reporting Child Sexual Abuse
If you are aware of any incident and are reasonably certain that a child is a victim of any form of sexual abuse please use any of the ways mentioned herein to contact an authority to help the child out.
Education for Children Belonging to Disadvantaged Groups
It is the duty of the government and the local authorities to ensure that children from disadvantaged groups are not discriminated against and are able to complete their elementary education.
Rehabilitation of children employed illegally
Any adolescent/child who has been employed illegally will be rehabilitated as per the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015.
Recording a Child’s Statement on Sexual Abuse
While recording a child’s statement on the abuse, the police should follow the rules laid down in law, mentioned herein.
Children working in the family business
Children (below the age of 14) and adolescents are allowed to work in the family business.
Police Complaint against Child Sexual Abuse
When a person approaches the police to make a complaint against child sexual abuse, the process mentioned herein will take place.
Health and Safety of Working Children
It is important that health and safety of working children is taken care of and is provided with the highest standards of safety and care.
Theft by Child
Under the Indian law, if a child commits theft, then the punishment for them is lighter than the punishment for an adult.
Child-Friendly Court Process
There are Special Courts set up to deal with child sexual abuse because of the sensitivity of the issue. Unlike normal Courts, these Courts are supposed to follow a special procedure to make sure that the child feels safe and comfortable.
Working Hours and Days of Employed Adolescents
Some general rules that should be followed when employing adolescents (except when they are working with family or government-funded/recognized schools).
False Reports or Complaints for Child Sexual Abuse
It is illegal to falsely complain about child sexual abuse or provide false information against another person alleging that they have sexually abused a child if they haven’t done so.
Duties of an Employer while employing adolescents
An employer employing an adolescent working in his establishment has to perform certain duties enumerated in this post.
Parents making Children work
Parents and guardians will be fined for making a child below the age of 14 work in any form of employment except for family business and as child artists.
Punishment for Employers against Child Labour
Any person who employs a child below 14 years of age can be punished with jail term or fine.