NEW DELHI: Of the 144 minors detained by the J&K Police since August 5 after Article 370 was read down, 83 were picked up on the mere suspicion of creating trouble, an analysis of a report filed by a four-judge Juvenile Justice Committee of the J&K High Court shows. The report was placed before the Supreme Court on Tuesday.
A child as young as nine was among the 83 against whom provisions of preventive detention under the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) were invoked in parts of Srinagar.
A 11-year-old was picked up under Section 107 (apprehension of breach of peace) of the CrPC from Batamaloo on August 5. The 9-year-old and another 11-year-old were picked up on August 7.
Fifty-two of them were detained/arrested on charges of rioting, stone-pelting, causing damage to public property, wrongfully restraining movement of persons and attacking police personnel, while five others were charged under various sections of the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC), including attempt to murder.
However, all juveniles barring two detained between August 5 and September 23 have been released.
Supreme Court lawyer K V Dhananjay said, “It is lllegal to arrest a juvenile under preventive detention laws. Section 18 of the J&K Juvenile Justice Act, 2013 says proceedings under Chapter 8 of the CrPC shall not be invoked against minors. Yet, the state police invoked Section 107 for detention.”