What are the Causes of Delinquency?

The causes of delinquency are several like:

1. Physical causes.

2. Psychological causes.

3. Economic causes.


4. Educational causes.

5- Political causes.

Juvenile delinquency statistics – What they reflect - Expunge Center

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Various investigations have been conducted to trace out patent factors responsible for the onset of delinquent behaviour. With the greater use of scientific techniques combined with critical studies of delinquents, it has become quite clear that criminals are not born but made. This naturally leads us to trace the causes of delinquency in the environment around the child.


Four elements in the social situation seem to be of utmost importance in influencing the behaviour of delinquents-the home, the peer group, the neighborhood and the school, political order.

(a) The Home and Delinquency

Almost all research workers have accepted that homes of delinquents are characterized by discords, desertions and divorces. Such homes have been pointed out as one of the main causes of delinquency.

More damaging than the absence of parents is the presence of interfamilial tension. The poor child has divided loyalties, he knows not to whom he should belong. Consequently he withdraws. All such children are unloved insecure and ill-supervised from peer groups. These peer groups when highly organized turn into gangs. These gangs, later on, indulge in anti-social activities


Many investigators feel that fundamental causes of delinquency are to be found in the treatment accorded to a child by his parents, especially during pre­school years. The basic theme is rejection.

When both the parents are alive, a poverty-stricken home presents tremendous handicaps to the rearing of children as well-adjusted individuals. The crippling compulsions of economic stringencies contribute to the UN fulfillment of basic needs. Small families mean more delinquency.

(b) The Peergroup and Delinquency

To those in sore need of a substitute for family-love and group belongingness, the peer- group or gang presents itself as a kind of closely kind unit that will answer the purpose. Recognition achieved through being noticed in a particular group is a good substitute for being loved by a parent.

The delinquent may dramatize himself as a hero before his person in the dangerous enterprises on which they embark.

Here have will find the anti-social sub-culture patterns with which his feelings agree. In some of the big cities of India, there are criminal organizations and groups that get hold of orphans and teach them the art of pick pocketing and stealing.

(c) Neighbourhood and Delinquency

The immediate environments of a child also affect the trend he will adapt in connection with his personality. It has been seen that more delinquents come from slums and thickly populated areas. A slum is not merely an aesthetically unpleasant place, it is an area loaded with dynamite for entire community.

The newspapers that glorify crime focus the attention of children on crime and furnish them with rationalizations for any later misconduct. From newspapers, the children learn about inconsistent moral values of adults, of business dishonesties, of black-markets and political corruption. The neighborhood furnishes the setting in which a child is educated.

(d) School and Delinquency

Although schools are playing an increasingly important role in the training of future citizens, they are also contributing in many cases to juvenile delinquency. The chief adverse element is the nature of the curriculum.

Delinquents are typically non-bookish, non-verbal and non-academic individuals who do poorly in traditional school subjects. It is probable that young delinquents experience a great deal of frustration in the course of their school life.

Teachers also influence students through emotional atmosphere of their class-room. If they are harsh, domineering and authoritative, they arouse the aggressive hostility of the already rejected child who now finds himself rejected once more.

Perhaps the worst teacher for the delinquent in the making is the one who not only cannot accept him but also takes the reaction to his rejection as a personal insult.

School discipline is sometimes administered as to be thoroughly unacceptable even to well-balanced normal children and adolescents. The effect on delinquents is disastrous and it stimulates them to even greater hostility to school.

(e) Democracy and Delinquency

Democratic order increases delinquency. Look at the extent to which things went before the emergency was declared in India. And then we boast of Youth

Organisations without reflecting on any one, it is said that youth Organisations legalize delinquency or delinquent behaviour. Moral Pressure can help in curing this. Lawlessness is at its extreme now.

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