Wednesday, June 30, 2010

And Justice for All?

Nowhere in the world was the Criminal Justice System(CJS) written with a child victim in mind. Having to face a system that is geared to the needs of adults can be a difficult experience for any victim of crime. When it comes to child victims and witnesses the experience can be doubly traumatic, thereby seriously undermining the full respect of the rights of the child. At the very least it can be intimidating. The implications of not having evolved ( since the 19th century) procedures to address this oversight unlike other countries( including other Commonwealth countries) does not work in favor of instilling a sense of confidence in families and the community to report so that the gap between prevalence and reporting can be narrowed. Furthermore it continues to undermine the abusive experiences of children and its impact while emboldening perpetrators. It is therefore imperative and urgent for more concerted efforts to work towards a more just and efficacious justice delivery system that would allow child victims/witnesses to truly realize their rights as enshrined in the Constitution of India

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