The 16-year-old juvenile accused of murdering 7-year-old Pradhyuman Thakur in Ryan International School, Gurugram, by slitting his throat in the school toilet, will be tried as an adult.
The decision by the Juvenile Justice Board came on Wednesday. It termed the offense allegedly committed by the class 11 student as “heinous”. The case is now transferred to the sessions court and the board held that the teenager was “mature enough” to understand the consequences of his actions and to think of ways in which he can escape punishment.
The juvenile delinquent will be produced before the court on December 22.
Pradhyuman’s family welcomes the decision with their lawyer terming it as a “turning point” in the high-profile case. However, the juvenile’s family expressed disappointment over the order.
A Social Background report of the accused, submitted to the board, said that the boy is aggressive in nature and had once planned to poison the water tank of the school.
What does being tried as an adult mean for the juvenile?
The accused will be tried under The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Amendment Bill, 2015 which was passed after Jyoti Singh’s gang rang rape in 2012.
The law allows juveniles to be tried as adults for “heinous” crimes such as rape and murder. Heinous offenses are those that are punishable with incarceration of seven years or more.
Background of the case
The dead body of Pradyuman was found in the toilet of Ryan International School, Gurugram school on September 8.
Earlier, the police had arrested a 42-year-old bus conductor associated with the school for the murder, alleging that he tried to sexually assault the 7-year-old. They said that he managed to carry a knife into the school premises and went to the washroom intending to commit sodomy on any child who walked in. The police also claimed that he later washed his hands and walked out of the toilet, leaving the knife behind.
Members of the Bar Association of Sohna and Gurgaon refused to appear on behalf of Kumar.
All this while, the conductor’s family maintained that he was being framed. His wife that had he was beaten up and given an injection. Similarly, Pradyuman’s family blamed the school for negligence. His father was dissatisfied by the probe and suspected some past connection which led to the murder of his boy. The bus conductor had no reason to murder his son, he had said.
In November, the CBI detained the class 11 student in connection with the murder. It is alleged that he wanted school exams to be postponed and murdered Pradyuman to get the school to declare a holiday.