The respondent`s representative submitted that a distinction had been made between mental age and chronological age. If Parliament had intended not to make such a distinction, it would have included it in the scope of the protection of the definition of adults of mental age under 18. If the term age is interpreted as mental age, it leads to ambiguity, chaos and unwarranted delays in the process, and would also affect the possibility of derailing the process and thwarting the purpose of the law. Moreover, it will also violate the clear intent of the legislator. If this happens, it will lead to two types of situations where, in the first case, the purpose of another children`s law is completely contradicted, and it will be more difficult to distinguish between mental age and insanity. In the second case, however, it is quite obvious that every victim or accused wants to have a friendly environment in which they are not much stressed or questioned about the incident. There is no doubt that this will broaden the scope, but in a negative way, where abuse can be carried out more frequently and effectively. However, it is also important that the rights of persons with mental disabilities are also protected in some way and promoted, certain provisions may be proposed to be included in the Mental Health Act and any other law sufficient to do so. In this way, the intention of the legislator must not be violated, and the rights of the mentally handicapped must not be confused with those of children. After World War I, the concept of fixed, hereditary and immutable intelligence became the dominant theory within the experimental psychological community. By the mid-1930s, researchers were no longer unanimous as to whether intelligence was hereditary or not.
There are still recurring debates about the influence of environment and heredity on an individual`s intelligence.  The judges` decision is rational and reasonable. Sometimes, even if it is possible that different meanings may be derived from the interpretation, it becomes necessary to stick to the literal meaning, as happened in the following case. The confusion between mental age and biological age will lead to chaos whenever this similar or similar situation occurs in the near future. Even if this time, if it had been treated as an exceptional case, there is a total possibility that anyone with an intellectual disability would try to enter the field of children. The issue repeatedly revolved around the definition of the child on page 2(d) of the POCSO Act, when counsel for the applicant argued that the definition of child should not be given a limited meaning to indicate that the words „18 years“ were exclusively associated with biological or chronological age and had nothing to do with the actual term „age“. It was also requested that the principle of intentional construction be adopted and that the word „age“ be constructed in such a way as to combine biological age and mental age. Emphasis was placed on legislators moving away from the chronological era by emphasizing the ability to understand the nature and consequences of action. Background: In many countries, a young person seeking medical help is not allowed to consent to his or her own assessment and treatment, but the same child may be tried for a crime.
The lack of legislation on child and adolescent mental health in most countries exacerbates the problems young people face in accessing mental health care independently. Countries with existing legislation rarely define a minimum age of consent for mental health (MAMHC). In contrast, almost all 196 countries surveyed adhere to legislation that sets a minimum age for criminal responsibility (MACR). Lawyer Aishwarya Bhati, who is representing the victim in the case, argues that not taking into account the mental age of victims is an attack on the very purpose of the 2012 law. Ms. Bhati argued before the Supreme Court that a deliberate construction that includes biological and mental age, not just biological age, will be a natural extension of the protective umbrella of the POSCO Act. Mental age is a concept related to intelligence. It examines how a particular individual behaves intellectually at a given age, relative to the average intellectual performance for that person`s actual chronological age (i.e. the time elapsed since birth).
Intellectual performance is based on performance in tests and live assessments by a psychologist. The score obtained by the person is compared to averages at different ages, and the mental age (x, say) is calculated so that the person`s score is equal to the average score at the age of x. One of Mr. Barwick`s allegations was that the trial court erred in not recognizing his history of abuse as a mitigating circumstance. He also claimed that his lawyer was ineffective in using mental health experts appropriately. His lawyer testified from several mental health experts and several lay witnesses who corroborated the abusive environment of Mr. Barwick`s childhood. However, the Supreme Court concluded that the testimony of these witnesses was not a sufficient basis to mitigate the circumstances. Mr. Barwick argued the right to a jury trial to determine whether he was eligible for the death penalty, citing Ring v.
Arizona, 536 U.S. 584 (2002), and Atkins v. Virginia, 536 U.S. 304 (2002). Finally, Mr. Barwick argued that although his chronological age at the time of the crime was over 18, his emotional age was well below that level; therefore, Atkins` death penalty should be excluded. He linked this age-related allegation to another – namely that it was inappropriate to include his juvenile delinquency as an aggravating factor in the jury`s recommendation on the death penalty. In 2006, Mr. Barwick obtained a hearing on several of these allegations, and at that time he presented new mitigating testimony from a psychiatrist, Dr.
Hyman Eisenstein. Modern theories of intelligence began to emerge with experimental psychology. At that time, much of psychology shifted from philosophical foundations to more biological and medico-scientific foundations. In 1890, James Cattell published what some consider the first „mental test.“ Cattell focused more on heredity than on the environment. This feeds into much of the debate about the nature of intelligence.  Among the international cases cited before the Supreme Court, South Africa`s Daniel Johannes Stephanus Van Der Bank v. The State (2008), which concerned the rape of an 8.5-year-old 19-year-old woman, is gaining prominence. The High Court ruled that the term „age“ also covers the mental age of the victim and at the same time provides protection and justice. South Africa`s Supreme Court of Appeal upheld the result reported in 2016. Recent studies have shown that mental age and biological age are linked.  His 68-year-old mother wanted the criminal case referred to a special court designated under the POCSO Act. The Supreme Court has reserved the case for decision and is determined to interpret the 2012 law in a judgment, even though the sole defendant died in custody.
Section 2 (d) of the Act designates victims as those of biological age below 18 years. The aspect of the „mental age“ of the victims was not taken into account by Parliament. M. Barwick sought to expand on Roper by claiming that his „mental age“ was less than 18 due to „brain damage and mental capacity“ and that it was inappropriate to use his previous conviction for violent crimes committed by minors as an aggravating factor. Although the Florida court rejected this allegation, the clear trend of Supreme Court decisions described here, limiting the criminal culpability of minors and retarded adults, is led by adult defendants who claim similar psychopathology. However, the legal weighting of individualized developmental disability claims creates a dilemma for the courts, as new neuroimaging, neuropsychological and social science research cited to support the differential treatment of adolescents as the average mature adult reveals differences that are not necessarily unique to adolescents. The same abnormal results of a neuroimaging study or neuropsychological test presented to excuse an accused for a particular act may very well be found in normal, well-behaved citizens. Similarly, many people with negative experiences early in their lives emerge as responsible, law-abiding citizens. Objective: This review reveals inconsistent development and legal perspectives on competency markers defined in medical and judicial systems.
Misra, J also highlighted the existence of a procedure to determine a child`s age, as provided for in the Juvenile Courts (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2015. The age of the victim is often a fact disputed in the courts of first instance and clarified by evidence such as birth certificates, school reports and radiological tests. If mental age were a fact, it would also be resolved by the court, possibly relying on medical expertise under section 45 of the Indian Evidence Act of 1872. Therefore, it would be contrary to the intent and wording of Parliament to read the word mental in paragraph 2(1)(d) of the 2012 Act.