What Is Rehabilitation?


Rehabilitation is a special branch of medicine that helps to improve the condition of an injured or disabled person both mentally and physically. 

Rehabilitation is an aggregate of medical, social, educational, and vocational measures for retaining the individual to his highest possible functional ability. 

Dictionary meaning of rehabilitation is "to restore an individual to a healthy or a normal life by training and therapy after imprisonment, addiction or illness."

The basic concept of rehabilitation is necessary under three categories

  • Medical
  • Offenders 
  • Victims


There are two types of victims viz adult and children. 

Rehabilitation Of Adults

Rehabilitation Of Adults is necessary for the following circumstances

  • Crime victims
  • Victims of natural calamities
  • Women victims of sexual assault, domestic violence, etc.
  • Victims of social customs like people belonging to LGBTQ categories, mentally challenged people, etc
  • Victims of war 

Rehabilitation Of Children

Rehabilitation Of children is necessary for the following circumstances

  • Children in need of tremendous care and protection 
  • Children in conflict with the law. Those children who may have committed an offense or who may have been accused of committing a crime. 

Why is the rehabilitation of victims necessary?

  • Removing the victim from a negative environment is very important to make the victims believe in the criminal justice mechanism.
  • It helps them to come out of what may have been caused due to victimization.
  • It provides medical and psychological aid which is very necessary for crime victims who may have undergone physical and mental trauma.
  • For social reintegration and repairing the reputation damage that happened following the victimization
  • For making victims financially independent.


Rehabilitation of offenders steps out from different conventions of human rights like the following -  

  • Right to life- This means every person has got a right to defend against any sort of accusation. Even though he is an offender, he has a right to be reformed and come back to the mainstream of society.
  • Right to work- Even if he has violated the law, he has a right to be reformed, he has a right to work.
  • Right to a family- in a number of cases the courts have said that even if a person has been accused or even if a person has been charged with an offense, his right to family continues so that the person becomes a responsible family man or takes upon himself the responsibility of his family. 

This is needed for social reintegration and of course reformation of the offender

  • Right to reputation- everyone has got a right to his reputation. When rehabilitation of an offender comes into process, he can be reformed, he can be destigmatized and thereby start a new life.
  • Right to property- also goes on with the offender and for this reason, as well he needs to be rehabilitated.
  • Right to education may not be suspended when the offender is a child charged with some accusation or when the offender has been convicted guilty in any case. Rehabilitation and the right to education go hand in hand to reform the child offender.

Rehabilitation of offenders may mean a chain of rehabilitation, reform, repent for what he has done, and in the end social reintegration.