Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Monday, January 21st, 2019

Keeping the Youth Away from Crimes

Crimes and delinquency within a society are very cruel. When the way for them are paved and they are allowed to multiply, they target all the sections of the society alike. Even they do not spare the innocent children and youngsters. Unfortunately, when the youngsters are caught in crimes, they tend to suffer in the ways that they do not even realize. More importantly, they make the society suffer as well – the society not only faces the consequence of addition in the number of criminals but it also loses an opportunity of betterment. The youngsters are full of potentials and energy. Their involvement in crime tends to divert all those potentials and energies towards negative activities, instead of betterment and development.  
It is, therefore, essential that a society must value its children and youngsters and it must make sure that they are provided facilities wherein they are able to improve themselves and the society as a whole. It is mostly the social conditions that decide the social roles and responsibilities of the youngsters. If a society is a well-developed society, it would definitely provide better opportunities for the youngsters to become positive part of the society but if it is underdeveloped and has many social problems, it is bound to influence the youngsters in a negative manner as the opportunities for the youngster to play a constructive role would be limited and they would be pushed towards miseries and crimes.
The dearth of proper opportunities in Afghanistan has created an environment that can promote crimes among the youth. The socio-political and socio-economic scenario in the country have been very much vulnerable for the youth. The opportunities for getting education, particularly higher education are limited and the employment opportunities are scarce. Poverty, on the other hand, has incapacitated the youngsters to pursue education and careers of their choice. Most of them do not have clear idea about their roles and responsibilities and neither are they sure of their future. Therefore, most of them saunter aimlessly in society instead of becoming a part of a larger whole. 
The circumstances are further deteriorated by the continued wave of insecurity and terrorism. Though there have been certain improvements made since the installation of so-called democratic government, crime among youngsters keeps on hampering the process of improvement.
Apart from the traditional crimes like mugging, rape, robbery and murder, youth in the country are dominantly caught in the web of terrorism. There are many fresh recruits in different terrorist groups who serve as potential cadre for such evil organizations and presently they have been serving as the man power for suicide bombings. In many of the cases of suicide bombings that have taken place in different parts of the country, the bombers have been youngsters. Moreover, there have been many youngsters involved in the smuggling and production of drugs in the country that has been a dominant evil for us for the last few decades.
To add fuel to the fire, there is scarcity of special courts or special training for youth and rehabilitation centers where young delinquents can be treated, trained or guided. If they are caught in their crimes they are put in the same prisons as adults and treated in the same manner as adults. Therefore, this does not only violate their rights but also diminishes their chances of improving themselves.
There are many youngsters in different prisons in Afghanistan who seem to have no special protection or treatment. Living with the criminals who are mature and aged, these children lose their chances of coming back to their normal lives and amending themselves. They get caught in more developed webs of crimes and criminal groups, and at the end, they come out of the prisons with developed skills and more connections to get settled in the world of crimes forever. Therefore, it is of utmost importance that the children must have their special prisons, rather rehabilitation centers where they are treated professionally so that they have more chances of becoming positive members of the society when they go out.
It is important to note that training centers for youngsters should be based on modern guidance and training techniques. Only keeping the youngster separate from the adults does not solve the issue; therefore, the issue should be dealt in a more logical and scientific manner. 
The unchecked crimes among youngsters in the country really points at serious concerns for the future of the country. Necessary measures must be introduced by the government in this regard to curb the situation appropriately and as per the requirements. Only confinements and severe punishments cannot guarantee a crimeless society and in the case of youngsters the matter gets even more complicated. Special considerations, special laws and special treatment must be in place to deal with the cases of juvenile delinquency; otherwise, the circumstances may get worse rather than getting any better.