In a shocking turn of events in the Ryan School murder, a Class XI student of the school was arrested, from his house in Sohna, by the CBI on the charge of murdering of 7-year-old Pradyuman. Sources say the student was charged under Section 302 of the IPC and was taken in for interrogation by the CBI on Tuesday night.
The boy’s father told CNN-News18, “The CBI questioned him the whole day and did not let me meet him. Around 11 pm, they told me that he has murdered Pradyuman.”
According to Sec 19(a) of the Juvenile Justice Act, information by the Police officer-in-charge on arrest needs to be provided to the parent /guardian and probation officer. Since the arrested student is a minor, the report cannot divulge the name of the accused or his parent.
Pradyuman’s father Varun Thakur blamed the Gurgaon-based school’s authorities for its carelessness. “I can only say that what happened was because of school’s carelessness. We never thought any student can be involved in this case,” he said.
Up until now, the school bus conductor at Gurgaon's Ryan International School was believed to be the prime suspect in the murder of the seven-year-old. Only days after the murder, Gurgaon Police had arrested the conductor.
The Gurgaon Police even claimed they had managed to secure a confession from the conductor — Ashok Kumar. The conductor’s family believed that Ashok was being framed.
After sustained persistence from Pradyuman’s parents that the Manoharlal Khattar government in Haryana transferred the murder case to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The 11 standard boy is booked under Section 302 of the IPC that deals with punishment for murder, which is a heinous crime.
According to the JJ Act, if a juvenile between the ages of 16 to 18 commits a ‘heinous’ crime, they may be tried as an adult based on the JJ Board’s assessment.
An offence is called a heinous crime if the term of punishment is seven years or more. The JJ Board’s decision on whether to try the juvenile as an adult is preceded by a preliminary inquiry to assess the following things:
Mental and physical capacity to commit such an offence, ability to understand the consequences of the offence and circumstances in which the person allegedly committed the offence.The JJ Act instructs that in order to complete the assessment, the Board can take the assistance of relevant experts, such as experienced psychologists. It is also clarified that the preliminary assessment is not a trial.