Theft by Child

Last updated on Apr 8, 2022

If a child commits theft, then the punishment for them is lighter than the punishment for an adult. This is usually what happens when a child commits theft:

  • A child may be arrested, but he cannot be kept in the jail – the police must present the child to the Juvenile Justice Board (JJB) within 24 hours1.
  • If the police does not release the hold immediately on bail, the child can only be kept in an Observation Home2 until he is  taken to JJB (within 24 hours).
  • The police are  supposed to inform a Child Welfare Officer who is supposed to accompany the child to the JJB for the first hearing3.

JJB is supposed to finish the enquiry within 4-6 months, and the case is terminated if it extends beyond that4.

If you have faced theft by a child, read here to understand the steps/options you can take to complain.

  1. Section 10, Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015[]
  2. Section 12, Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015.[]
  3. Rule 8(2)(iii), Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Model Rules, 2016.[]
  4. Section 14, Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015.[]

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