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Role of Psychosocial Factors in Criminal Behaviour in Adults in India

Sikand, Mehak; Reddy, Jayasankara, K.

Jaishankar, K

Over the years, there has been a steady increase in the number of crimes committed annually in India (Snapshots, 2014). The purpose of this paper was to delve into the psychological and social factors that contribute to the development of criminal behaviour in the Indian context. For the current research, concurrent embedded mixed research design was used. Twenty individuals with a criminal record were selected using purposive sampling and twenty individuals with no criminal record were matched on the basis of age, gender and socio economic status. Eysenck Personality Questionnaire- Revised was administered on them. A semi structured interview delving into understanding the social factors that contributed to the criminal behaviour was taken for six individuals who have a criminal record. Results revealed that there was no significant difference in the personality traits of extraversion, neuroticism, psychoticism and lie score between the two groups. However, various social factors like lack of social support, less emphasis on education and awareness, financial constraints and certain individual traits were found to be prevalent. Furthermore, an interactive effect of personality and environmental factors was established. A model was also proposed for providing interventions at an individual as well as societal level.   

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