Shackled Dreams on the Long Road to Justice
Sampurnaa Bharadwaj
JUVENILE, NOT DELINQUENT: CHILDREN IN CONFLICT WITH THE LAW by Enakshi Ganguly Speaking Tiger, 2023, 228 pp., ₹399.00
May 2023, volume 47, No 5

Juvenile, not Delinquent is an elucidation of the author’s rendezvous with the innumerable children who find themselves on the other side of law; the legal quagmire children find themselves in, with little support to navigate the complexities of the juvenile justice system; and the unwavering commitment of those who never give up on them. It is an account of the countless ways the child ‘offenders’ challenge, inspire, and often transform the lives of professionals who work with them. It is a tale of how with a little love, trust, and patience from an adult, these children, otherwise invisible to society, can have a second chance at living a meaningful, dignified life.

An international expert on human rights, Enakshi Ganguly debunks the populist perception that those who work with young offenders believe that they must not be punished. She indeed found herself portrayed as an adversary in the 2012 Delhi gang rape case, when HAQ had filed an intervention at the Supreme Court of India against the petitions filed by the deceased’s parents, Dr. Subramanian Swamy and others seeking harsher punishments for the underage offender, who the media falsely claimed was the most violent and monstrous in the sexual assault.

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