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Examining The Reformation & Rehabiltation Of Criminals

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Criminology
Wordcount: 4299 words Published: 18th Aug 2021

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The words crime and criminality have become commonly used everyday newspaper and other mass media constantly bring to our attention whose the present day life is getting criminalized.

Crime is any act or behavior which violates the norms of society. And it happens due to the discrepancy between the set norms and the meager means provided to attain them. The nature and extent of crime differs from person to person and are related to the socio- economic conditions of society and the changes taking place in the moral value system. The phenomenon of crime has been present in all ages and in all societies. Durkhein (1964) remarks that Crime is a social fact and human act, crime is both functional and normal. No society can be completely exempt from it. It may be that a person commits crime initially due to some unusual circumstances- some mental disorder or some socio- economic reasons, but later he becomes a hard criminal due to his rejection by society.

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History has shown that crime has been a predominantly male phenomenon, but by and by we also see that the scenario is changing. It is generally believed that the female is not much or a risk for crime in India, where she is brought up in a spirit of modesty under the protective care of the male members of the family with in home , but by the advent of time, especially since the second world war followed by the partition of the country and mass flow of refugees, break down of family life, broken home , economic distress, unhappy intra- familial relations and conflicts, widening systems of social activities , free mixing of men and women in all walks of life radio, movies, television , wide spread of pornographic literature and so and so forth, the picture has changed substantially. Female criminality has become a source of concern to society during the past two decades. Despite inherent weaknesses, the data show that in India an increasing trend in female criminality has been observed considering that their involvement of females in crime, it was round that their highest involvement mounts up to 5.1 percentage., which was against their own sex. Statistics shows that criminality among women was least in madras an highest in Bombay ( considering the four metropolitan cities) particularly disturbing features are the involvement of juvenile girls not only in property offences like theft and six snatching but also in cases of rape, kidnapping immoral trafficking bootlegging peddling of narcotic drugs and even in murder cases. Drug addiction among girls also is on to increases and in many cases they commit theft and crime in order to make money for purchase of drugs.


The past four decades have seen our society virtually saturated with crime, sensationalism, sadism, sex and brutality. Commercial films , to sell their products are utilizing the servicing of good looking recently ,young women as models in the advertisements . Film makers are also making their contributions.

Mostly though the causes of crime and the tall into criminal ways are accidental or unfortunate turn of events , one become a criminal a person is always treated that way. Even if that person shuns bad ways, he is not accepted by recently, as if he would been had he not got the liable. There are many who would prefer to live as other people do but the curse remains that society and individuals in society tend to keep them away. They are really segregated from the main stream of society. The state punishes and release them ,but society imposes life imprisonment.

If the convicts are the earning members, their families having lost their bread winners to the jail becomes alienated from the prisoner. Shunned by society cut off from their families, living in shame and guilt, it is no wonder that prisoners are so deeply traumatized and brutalized, that they become hardened criminals and can rarely integrate with the mainstream. It is so pathetic that when a criminal is imprisoned he is not only the victim but his family is also cut off from society. The whole family members are looked down upon by the society. Society hesitates to make connections with the victimized family and its members. Children of the prisoners are being punished the most, during the time when their mother is behind the bars. Society labels his as the child of prisoner and even in school, they are teasted by other students. Neglected by relatives and society, they may develop into unhealthy personalities again following the path of their parents.

We, the sons and daughters of mother India know that such conditions do prevail and we turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to the silent tears shed by the victims and we accuse criminals, mostly born as a result of such conditions. We never bother about reasons of criminality which has taken deep root in every from in our society, our country. Our system has become rotten beyond description. There seems little hop of ever lis changing for the better, yet behind such dark clouds also. We see a silver lining that of the efforts of some people and of the state to do what they can to improve.



Female offenders are more amenable and responsive to rehabilitation and reforms, as crimes committed by them are acts which negate their roles in society and are acts against themselves like sex crimes. A few reform programmers are already going on in various jails in the country to rehabilitate them. At atpadi open jail in Pune, the families of prisoners are permitted to stay with them, convicts are entitled to a fifteen days vacation every year evening are spent watching television and radio, fruits and vegetables are grown in the jail surroundings. Jerald jail in pane is asis’s largest jail known for being the biggest contributor to Maharashtra’s estimated Rs.8 core prison industry Nari Nike than a correctional home in Luck now jail is giving educational and vocations training to the inmates. A unique programmed started recently in Tihar jail emphasizes ethical therapy which includes meditation and yoga. Vocational classes such as pen making and carpet weaving were started. Money earned by the prisoners are deposited in a bank opened inside the jail premises.

Nai Disha a pilot project funded by Central Social welfare Board under the patronage of Mrs. Kiran Bedi aims to alleviate the condition of women prisoners and provide them with educational and rehabilitative services. There are a good educational and rehabilitative services. There are a good number of non governmental organizations working for the rehabilitation of prisoners and their families.


As early as 1920, the Indian jails committee had declared that the reformation and rehabilitation of offenders was the ultimate goal of the prison system. It has suggested the setting up of protective homes rather than the jails for women convicts. It also recommended that women convicts, under trials prisoners murderers and hardened criminals should be kept separate from one another. There is a model prison manual which contains guidelines to handle women prisoners, formulated by the All India jail manual Committee (1957-59) on the society adopts a variety of means to control crime imprisonment is one of the commonly used means of handing the crime. It provides protection from and to offenders so the they cannot commit crime for a specified period of time and others would not commit crime on them out of vengeance. The purpose of imprisonment has in recent times changed from punishment to correction and then to rehabilitation . The emphasis is on the treatment and rehabilitation of offenders with a view to modify their behavior.

With the purpose of reforming and rehabilitating the convicts back into the society. Modern Correctional concept offer a variety of programmes- individual or group therapy session education vocational training maintenance work and other recreational activities. It is held that these programmes not only keeps in maintaining discipline in the person, but it reduces the operating costs, assists the inmate in earning and helping their families and above all teaches some trades to the inmates which would be helpful in their ultimate rehabilitation.

Although in many jails in India prison work programmes are going on , doubtful whether they are adequate up to date and suitable to the beads of the convicts.

The real mental state and the main concerns and needs of prisoners are to be understood before designing the prison work programmes. Also the relationship of the convicts with the authorities is a major factor for the effective implementation of the programmes.

The convict after the release is not received as a normal individual by the members of society and some times even by his own family members. Because once a man undergoes imprisonment for any offence he is labeled as a criminal for ever. This stigma towards them stands as a barrier in their rehabilitation for the proper designing of the programmes for rehabilitation of the offenders, their plan a after release has to be understood. It is also tried to know whether the convicts would get support from the family members after release.


He himself should be feel as he is accepted in the society and family. For that reason while the prisoner is behind the bars their case should be abolished and their problems should be collected for corrections.

In order to fulfill the purpose of reformation and rehabilitation facilities ,should be provided to the convicts to ensure their contact with their family members. Their emotional attachment will not be weakened if there is frequent contact between the convicts and their family members.

For the proper planning of prisoners rehabilitation and reformation by officials and voluntary agencies who work for the welfare of prisoners, an understanding of their main concern is very significant. The impact of imprisonment may not only be on the prisoners but can be on the members who are closely elated to them also.

It a criminal is released and he don’t have anybody and no acceptance of his personality may make him to turn to crime again. For this aspects the rehabilitation starts when a criminal is arrested and put behind the bars. For every crime there may be a cause. Crime can be treated as a disease. Unless we find the cause, Correction control; cannot be done.


Rehabilitation of a criminal has to be done in all above aspects. Occupancy or involvements alone will not but a factor for a criminal for his total Rehabilitations. His mental attitude towards the life style and his personality has to be developed according to the level of a normal civilian.

The functioning of the criminal justice system crime and society, -psycho- social prospective of crime are examined in the light of ,latest data attempts to find out the relationship between the socio economic background of prisoners and the necessity of their family/ children’s rehabilitation.


Most of the crime are related to economic aspect via robbery, burglary and the theft, poverty and unemployment was the main cause of crime in society.

A few years ago two Harvard scholars, criminologist James Wilson psychologist Richard Herringston , under took a ten year study to determine the cause of crime. In 1985 they published a landmark hook ,crime and Human nature in which they challenged fifty years of conventional wisdom that “crime was the result of race ,poverty and social oppression”?. Although they determined that intelligent and genetic had some effect on behaviors the primary cause of crime was simply individual choice. These choices were determined by one’s moral conscience which is shaped early in life and most crucially by the family. It is in the circle of the home where children first learn the importance of individual responsibility .Until we reclaim our families and our children we never deal with the moral crisis in our society. Scientific as well as sociological researches point out the fact that the cause of committing crime, in almost all cases is inner stress mental disharmony and unresolved tension.

It is to be pointed cut at the outset that causes leading to crime or delinquency are almost the same. The difference in the no men cloture so far as the causes are concerned is only because of the age of the offenders committing the crime. Thus almost all causes and circumstances as which lead to delinquency are also responsible for crime.

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While criminological research has called attention to the operation of biological factors in the causation of crime. Efforts have also been made to indicate how situational factors are conducive to such a tendency . Situational factors of the great variety of research and study on the relation of crime to situational conditions the most important are (a) family conditions,(b) companionship factor (c) community conditions (d) economic conditions and (e) religious and other factors.


There are a various family conditions which have been considered responsible for the causation of delinquency such as break in the family unit the size of the family sibling position ,unsatisfactory parent – child relations, demoralized home conditions, lack of discipline and control ever children and economic inadequacy .Among these the most important are the broken home factor and unsatisfactory child parent relations.

The companionship factors

This has been studied from three angles, firstly. There are many specific offences which are committed by a company of two or more than two persons. Secondly the persons are likely to fall in the company of bad elements who are committing crime and thirdly, a person may learn certain tricks from older offenders when in custody. It has been a matter of common observation that much delinquent and criminal activity is an affair of association of two or more individuals . For may specific offences, particularly the property offences are committed by a group of two or more persons.

It has been observed that sometimes boys, specially those rearing the streets of city slums start something as a game, which often ends in delinquency. Similarly the patterns and traditions of gang life may bring anti-social behavior and ultimately may merge into a from of organized crime for older boys. It is not generally the whole gang which is delinquent, but often members pair off in two some as or three- some in delinquent activity. Case studies and life histories of juvenile offenders frequently reveal bad companionship as a causative favor in delinquency.

© Community Conditions

Among community conditions community disorganization density and over crowing agencies of moral risk and particularly the cinema are considered to be the factors responsible for the causation of crime. The sociologists have attempted tp explain the existence and aggravation of social problem with the help of community or social disorganization due to the weakening of institutional and primary group influence over the lives and conduct of individuals. Agencies or institutions of moral risk are frequently mentioned as an important factor in the causation of crime. Amusements of low moral tone, cheap dance halls, gambling parlors and dens of vice are considered to be responsible for the demoralization of young children. Many a times the criminals visit these places and pick up their companions from there or teach such practice to other

Economic Conditions

The effect of economic conditions in the causation of crime has been studied from three angles. Firstly effect of class differential or economic status. Secondly effect of different economic levels in areas, regions and countries, and thirdly affect of different business activity.

Effects of the economic status of the criminal population as compared with the economic status of the general or non-criminal population have been studied. In this connection bongers theory has great importance. The Dutch criminologists, Mr.Bonger has emphasized the environmental determination of crime as compared to the individual factors. He thinks that the basic cause of crime is the economic pressure of a capitalist system, under the capitalist system man has become egoistic and more capable of committing crime. He contends that long hours of works have deleterious effect on behavior and bad housing conditions likewise have a bad effect upon conduct most of the criminals tend to come from bad housing quarters. Unemployment and economic insecurity which are by products of industrialism are considered important factors in crime like wise illiteracy and lack of education are considered important factors in crime. For this he quoted statistics and claims that the illiterates supply. In general a greater proportion of the criminals a proportion much greater than that of illiterates in the general population. He also offers statistics to prove that majority of criminals come from the poorer classes- from the non possessions of the means of production.

Regarding crime among different social classes. It is very difficult to point cut which class is more liable to commit crime than the other. Even if it were possible to point out that a particular class was liable to commit crime,. It could not be considered as a causative factor in criminal behaviors , since it merely indicates a risk rather than the factors that bear directly on behavior.

The Religious and other factors

The studies of crime in India show that besides the factors there are some other important factors too which lead to crime in this country. Among these may be mention’s (i) the superstition among illiterate person (ii) exploitations of poor by elders in religious matters.


Crime presentation is a term that is often used very broadly all systems of prevention and controls are implicitly or explicitly based on theories of causation. The best means of preventing crime is to make punishment for criminal behavior greater than anticipated rewards while few contemporary policy makers totally accept such tenets, classical philosophy still under lies our criminal law in what might be termed the punitive or rational legal model of prevention and control.

The tenets of positivism have given rise to what might be termed the socio- psychological or correctional concept of crime prevention. This holds that criminal offenders are motivated by either individual personality defect or societal imperfections or by both. The means used for the prevention of crime will largely depend on which aspect of causation is embraced. For example the notion that criminal behavior is primarily a result of individual maladjustment suggests that attempts be made to identify potential offenders through their personality patterns and that they be offered treatment before engaging in crime or after conviction to discourage further illegal activity. Counseling behavior modification transactional analysis drug treatment psychotherapy and other methods have been tried for effecting change in prospective or actual offenders . In this approach ,correctional concepts can serve as both preventive and control measure because they can be administered before or after the commission of a crime. In the preventive programme the best method to control crime is to check its occurrence in the childhood period.

Proposals for punishing criminals increasing out defenses against criminal activities and social intervention are all concerned with preventing crime. Crime is prevented when criminals are afraid to commit new crimes. Crime is also prevented when criminals are killed or kept behind bars and when citizens look up their valuables and themselves thus frustrating people who should behave criminally. Crime is prevented when the personal and social situations of criminals are improved or when the economic political and social order that generates high crime rates is modified so that it no longer doer so.

Of the three methods intervention is not or could be the most effective procedure .We have seen that crime is rooted in the economic, political and social order. Most social scientists realize that it is foolish to leave this situation the way it is and then try to reduce crime by punishing criminals or defending against them. But punishment and defense are easier than carrying out some of the sweeping social changes that have been proposed eliminating poverty. Unemployment and discrimination for example in the long run however genuine crime prevention changing the conditions forms that cause crime will be both cheaper and more effective.

“better knowledge about crime and criminals does not necessarily mean that crime will be eliminated. Never the less valid knowledge must be the basis of all prevention policies and programs. In the short run efforts can be made to reduce crime thought punitive and defensive measures. I in the long run crime must be controlled the way diseases have been controlled he developing valid knowledge about its causes. To put its another way the most practical programme for preventing criminals one that uses criminological theory to uncover the roots of crime and then digs them out.

The crime control model stresses the need to isolate trouble makers from the rest of society and calls for speedy arrest and punishment of all who commit crimes. The due process model, on the other hand stresses the need top preserve civil liberties. It calls for softening the rush to punishment and for considering human rights and the rights of accused individuals.

Police officers have come to symbolize the law yet only a small percentage of the work done by a police department is directly concerned with crime. When performing as law enforcement officials the police are expected to use the crime control model ( that is they should catch criminals ) but they are also expected to use the due process model ( that is they should protect the rights of the accused)

Education plays an important role in the process of socialization of the individual. It helps in developing a sense of awareness in the individual to distinguish the right from that of the wrong. This conscicusness helps the individual to refrain from committing anti-social activities.

For successful prevention of crime in India the police besides organizational changes and adoption of modern scientific methods to step up efficiency, will have to develop a more constructive and positive approach to build up better support with the community. The greater the alienation of the police from the public the more difficult it will be for the police to effectively control and combat crime. One of the most effective deterrents to crime is an alert public .A public aware of its responsibilities and power to co-operate with the law enforcement officers in fighting crime and disorderly conduct. This co-operation entails prompt reporting of all crimes volunteering useful information to the investigators the willingness to act as witnesses in the criminal cases and helping police in various other useful ways.

For effectively controlling and containing the proliferation of crime it is essential that the different segments of the criminal justice system must function in cohesion there must be vigorous law enforcement prompt and decisive prosecution and realistic punishment of the criminals . The criminal justice system in order to be effective and credible must function with speed unfortunately in different courts of the country there is a staggering number of cases pending at various stages of adjudication.

In any discussion of crime prevention there is emphasis on quick police response whenever a crime is reported. But it has been significantly influenced by the speed of police response, the time taken by the members of the public to report the incidents has been crucial. An evaluative study on the subject of crime control and the police shows that respect of a large number of serious crimes the time taken by the public to report crime to the police was the primary determinant of the eventual outcome.

At present for a variety of reasons the people try to avoid the police and the courts and this attitude is not going to alter without basic changes in the present legal and criminal justice system . Within the existing limitations, however the police can do a healthy job by trying to set its won house in order and inspiring public confidence by sincere and conscientious performance of duties. The people will not hesitate to pass on information to the police only when they feel convinced that the want to help them. The senior police administrations here should give the proper lead. The supreme need of law enforcement today in good leadership that are characterized by vision , unselfishness and determination to improve.


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