New Delhi: The Juvenile Justice Board will pronounce its order on Thursday whether a minor involved in Delhi gang rape-cum-murder case be prosecuted along with other five accused in the fast-track court.
    
The Board presided over by Principal Magistrate Geetanjali Goel on Wednesday reserved its order on a petition filed by Janata Party President Subramanian Swamy seeking that no leniency be shown to juvenile as his act was brutal and crime committed by him shows that it was not the action of a juvenile.
    
He submitted that the juvenile be prosecuted like all the other co-accused in the case in which arguments of charge will commence on Thursday in a fast-track-court presided by Sessions Judge.
    
"The order will be pronounced on Thursday at 4 pm," the Board Principal Magistrate Goel said.
    
Seeking directions to stay the proceedings of the case before it, Swamy referred to the "discrepancies" between the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Act and the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
    
"The JJ Act terms those above 18 as adults, while the IPC says its 12," Swamy said adding "The concept of criminal responsibility needs to be added into the Act and allow the court to differentiate between innocent children and juvenile delinquents".

Swamy said that the JJ Act is a piece of beneficial legislation which has been formulated to protect the innocence of children and its youth and it should not be applied in a brutal gang rape and murder case.
    
"In the current case the extreme malice and depravity with which the accused has allegedly committed the crime shows that it is not the action of a juvenile, who the law supposes to be of tender age and mind and not fully capable of being responsible for his actions, but rather these are actions of the most evil of men for whom this beneficial legislation clearly is not meant," he said.
    
The juvenile involved in the December 16 incident, in which a 23-year-old girl was brutally assaulted and gang rape leading to her death in a hospital in Singapore, claimed to be less than 18 years and is being tried in JJB.
    
Swamy, along with advocate Supriya Manan, has also sought JJB's permission to be impleaded in the case and be allowed to prosecute the juvenile along with the public prosecutor.
    
"The applicants have no other intention but to assist the court in reaching a just and fair conclusion, after a free and fair trial is given to the juvenile accused.
    
The juvenile accused is at present lodged in the juvenile home, the other five adult co-accused are lodged in Tihar jail and are being prosecuted in Saket fast-track court.

(Agencies)

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