Should young criminals be punished by sending them to jail

IELTS Writing Task 2 with sample answer.

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

A newspaper article was published recently about a 14 year old boy who had dangerously damaged his school. For that he was given a punishment to clean the streets. Should young criminals be punished by sending them to jail or any other alternative form of punishment should be given.

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.

Sample Answer:
Passing judgment on the juvenile criminals is the most difficult task for the guardians of law. Is it justifiable, to send them to jail, like adults? I believe, no reasons can defend this punishment, rather alternative forms of treatment should be adopted.

Child’s mind is extremely pliant. It accepts everything going around it as a right way, whether it is a violent television programme or a rude behaviour of their parents, teachers and elders. Moreover, they are often brainwashed by the adults to follow a wrong path, for instance, below 18 terrorists’ minds are filled with hatred against the particular group of a society by their religious leaders. And many times they commit crime because of their impulsive behaviour. Hence, their consciousness cannot be held responsible for such actions.

Prison is not a right place for the juveniles. Firstly, its loneliness and other criminal presence can provoke them to adopt an antisocial behaviour. Secondly, they may lose faith on the judicial system, and might end up again in the jail by repeatedly committing a same offense. Finally, their immature body is not meant for the harsh physical activities in the jail.

Instead, sending them to rehabilitation centre is the best alternative, if child has committed a serious offense like murder, there he shall be taught moral values and other socially acceptable behaviour and, for the smaller crime such as theft, parents should be asked to teach that. In a situation given in the question, I feel that giving him a humiliating punishment would damage his self respect and overall mental development, rather than bringing a positive change.

In conclusion, punishing the innocent mind for the surroundings we have created is not at all reasonable.

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