Crimes by teenagers and youths are on the rise across the country, giving an alarming picture of the society.
Social scientists and experts attribute the involvement of teens and youths in crimes like murder, rape and kidnap mainly to the lack of family and social bonds and easy access to harmful contents on internet.Moral degradation among youths has reached such a level that even parents, classmates and friends are being killed at their hands over trivial matters.
Teenagers sometimes commit killing and kidnapping in association with various gangs just for money.
On February 6, six-year-old Sohel was slaughtered by Abrabul Haque, 19, at Gowainghat upazila in Sylhet.
A few days ago, Abrabul along with his girlfriend went to a tea garden in Jaflong where locals caught him in amorous moment. Later, locals Shoab Ali, Kala Mia and others informed the couple’s family of the matter that backfired.
By the time Abarbul’s family kicked him out of his house, the teenager went into a rage and took revenge by slaughtering Sohel, 6, son of Kala Mia, and dumped the body in deep forest. Police nabbed Abrabul in this connection.
On February 9, Abrabul admitted to killing Sohel and gave confessional statement in this connection.Criminologists and social scientists say nowadays teenagers and youths are increasingly getting involved in crimes such as pickpocketing, extortion, kidnapping, drug and arms dealing, carjacking, murder and bombing.
In 2015, a Jagannath University study on teenage crime found that the number of juvenile offenders is increasing over time.
The study of teenage crime data had been analyzed from 1990 to 2012. It was found that between 1990 and 2000, there were 3,501 cases of juvenile crimes in Dhaka, but in the next 10 years from 2000 to 2010, the number of cases rose to 4,822.
According to the study, there were 82 cases of murder and 87 of women abuses found from 1990 to 2000 which stood 138 and 224 respectively from 2001 to 2010.
According to the year-wise analysis, there were 512 cases of teenage juvenile cases in Dhaka in 2001. Among them, 138 cases were of theft, 18 of murder and 18 of women torture.
According to statistics, five years after 2006, the total number of cases did not increase in proportion. In 2006, a total of 528 cases were filed. Of them, 15 were related to murder and 22 rape, but the number of theft case decreased to 113.
Meanwhile, the total number of cases in connection with the teenage crimes stood at 485 in 2012.
During this time, the cases of murder and torture of women increased to 17 and 38 respectively while those of theft 85.
On September 30, 2013, Deen Islam, 15, was arrested in Sutikhalpar area in Jatrabari with 25 Yaba pills.
On January 14, in 2017, Shifatul Islam, 17, a drug addict, slaughtered his elder brother Shihabur Rahman Shihab, 27, in the city’s Adabar area while a day later on January 15, a teenager Kamal Hossain was stabbed to death by his friends following a conflict over drug in Shah Ali area of Mirpur and on January 17, Abdul Aziz, 16, was stabbed to death by a rival gang in Tejkunipara area of Tejgaon centring a feud over cricket.
Khandaker Farzana Rahman, assistant professor, Department of Criminology, Dhaka University, told daily sun: “Teenagers were involved in horrific crimes due to absence of family and social bonds. Parents are not giving to their children quality time, which leads to their social and moral degradation.
She added that “Another important matter is easy access to advanced technology including smartphones at a younger age.”
“Besides, the gang culture which developed a few years back in our country is also responsible for various crimes. Teenage gangs are seen involved in various crimes including murder across the country.”
Asked about the juvenile crimes, Mohammad Mainuddin Mollah, assistant professor, Institute of Social Welfare and Research, DU, told daily sun: “If a healthy environment is created in families, educational institutions and in neighborhood, the crime rate of teenagers and youths will be reduced.”
He suggested that children and adolescents should participate in social and cultural activities beyond their academic studies to keep them busy.
“Children will not get involved in crime and dishonesty if they grow in a healthy and beautiful environment.