What prompted you to make such a career choice?
Right from my childhood, I was curious about crime serials like cid, Crime Patrol etc. My inclination towards such serials grew in my teens, but certainly not to the extent of jumping into criminology. This critical decision to redirect my career towards criminology came during the fag end of my U-19 cricket career, after I was treated unfairly by the Board members of my own District Cricket Association. Hadn’t I experienced this negative stimulus, I wouldn’t have jumped into criminology.
How are criminals and victims perceived in India?
The social contract between the public and State in India, is a sensitive matter. Once it is broken by any individual, it sparks huge public outcry to condemn the crimnals. Therefore, according to the public, they ought to be punished for their anti-social actions.
However, what is so disconcerting is the attitude of the public towards the victim. They are often treated unfavourably. After facing all anguish, they find themselves victimised for the second time at the hands of the society at large. Therefore, I espouse changing criminal justice system to victim justice system, as victims are often sidelined from the judicial process while offenders enjoy privileges.
The graph has been on the rise for online crime in India. There has been a steep rise in the rate of online crimes in India.
We have witnessed the emergence of some newer forms of it such as cyber-terrorism and credit card frauds. One of the lethal features of cyber crimes is that it does not require an offender to physically confront the victim in order to attack them. Today, the advancement of social networking sites provides unparalleled opportunity to commit such crimes.
India’s stance in dealing with juvenile delinquents does not seem very promising. Although, the nuanced version of Juvenile Justice Act has duly come into force, its merits to contain juvenile delinquency is yet to be determined. The social context within which this problem is embedded needs to be addressed from grass root levels.