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Dec 16 gangrape: Centre seeks extension of juvenile’s stay

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New Delhi: The Centre today asked Delhi High Court to extend the observation home stay of the juvenile convict in December 16, 2012 gangrape case who is scheduled to be released on Sunday, saying several mandatory aspects were missing from the post-release rehabilitation plan which needed to be considered before setting him free.

After hearing the brief arguments and perusing the post-release plan which was submitted by the central government, the court reserved its verdict on BJP leader Subramanian Swamy’s PIL seeking stay on the juvenile’s release.

No mention of mental health status and follow-up were among the concerns listed by Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Sanjay Jain while appearing for the Centre. He sought an extension of the juvenile’s stay till the time all the missing aspects in the post-release plan are taken into account.

Swamy told a bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Jayant Nath that though the juvenile’s term may have ended, but the court can “circumscribe” his movements.

The ASG told the court that it has several “concerns” regarding the plan made by the management committee (MC), set up as per the Juvenile Justice (JJ) Rules.

He said the committee’s plan does not mention the mental health status of the juvenile, which is a mandatory requirement under the rules.

He said the mental health aspect was missing from the report of the person who counselled the juvenile.

The ASG also said that the plan does not mention anything regarding the juvenile’s willingness to continue in the societal mainstream.

He said that no follow-up action has been contemplated in the MC’s report and this aspect was “completely missing”.

He told the bench that as per records, the juvenile is set to be released on December 20 this year and not tomorrow and sought that his stay be extended till the time the MC takes into account all the missing aspects in its post-release plan.

The court, thereafter, said it now shall go through the MC’s plan and the Intelligence Bureau’s report, which was placed in a sealed cover, and will pass an order.

It also wondered whether it can curtail the liberty of a person.