‘Doctrine Of Doli Incapax’ (Crime Committed By Minor And Their Rehabilitation)


  • Ms. Ritu Malik Research Scholar, UILS (Department of Legal Studies), Chandigarh University, V.P.O. Rishalu, Panipat , District- Panipat (Haryana)-132104, (India) image/svg+xml


Doctrine of Doli incapax, Doli capax, Criminal Law, Juvenile Justice Law


In the present scenario, crime is increasing day by day in our society and it’s affected the upcoming generation and also affected the ideology of youth and especially of children aged between 7 to 16 years old. Further the term ‘doli incapx’ it’s a Latin language word also an obscure doctrine of ancient origin that provides a presumption that children over the age of criminal responsibility but under a certain age are incapable to commit a crime or offense, even an age category is defined under Indian penal Code in which a child up to the limit of age is incapable to commit any crime if done so then he will be exempted from the penalty for that crime committed by him and our Indian Penal law also further define a category of children which can commit a crime or has knowledge of criminal activity or having the capability to commit a crime that also known as ‘doli capax’ and there is also special category and procedure to tried that children under special law and they also kept under separate facility or observation during the trial and after the conviction.

I think it is hard to regard this ancient rule about the capacity of a child between ten and fourteen as altogether satisfactory or suited to modern conditions. Nevertheless, it is clearly the law and we have to enforce it.

‘No civilized society’, says Professor Colin Howard in his book entitled Criminal Law, 4th ed. (1982), p 343, ‘regards children as accountable for their actions to the same extent as adults’.’... The wisdom of protecting young children against the full rigor of criminal law is beyond argument. The difficulty lies in determining when and under what circumstances that protection should be removed.



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The Queen v M [1977] 16 SASR 589 at 595, per B.

R (A Child) v Whitty (1993) 66 A Crim R 462 at 462, per Harper J.

The second of the more important categories consists of the mentally ill; for a comparison of the two, see Woodbridge 1939.

Lukhini Agradaninini, (1874) 22 WR (Cri) 27.

(1874) 22 WR (Cri) 27.

AIR 1989 Pat 217, 1991 (39) BLJR 321, 1991 CriLJ 1283.

AIR 1976 SC 1991, 1976 CriLJ 1545, (1976) 2 SCC 215.




How to Cite

Ms. Ritu Malik. (2021). ‘Doctrine Of Doli Incapax’ (Crime Committed By Minor And Their Rehabilitation). Legal Research Development: An International Refereed E-Journal ISSN: 2456-3870, 6(II), 01–03. Retrieved from http://lrdjournal.com/index.php/lrd/article/view/133