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Courts and Juveniles Under the JJA

Under the Juvenile Justice Act, each state was authorized to establish one or more juvenile courts represented by judicial or metropolitan magistrates to handle children in conflict with the law; one of the magistrates would serve as a principal magistrate. In addition to magistrates, each court had a panel with two social workers, one of whom had to be a woman (Kethineni and Klosky 2000). Magistrates were required to be knowledgeable in child psychology or child welfare.

Juvenile welfare boards (JWBs) were made up of a chairperson and other appointed members. Like the juvenile court, at least one of the board members was required to be a woman. Each member of the board has the powers of a metropolitan or judicial magistrate. Appeals from juvenile courts or Juvenile Justice Boards could be filed either in the Sessions Court[1] or the High Court.[2] Juveniles who were arrested or detained by the police were needed to be released on bail unless such a release was considered detrimental to the juvenile. Denial of bail could be appealed to the High Court.

  • [1] The Sessions Court deals with criminal cases at the district (county) level.
  • [2] The High Court is the highest court at the state level and it has both original and appellatejurisdiction.
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