Anuja Kapur is an Indian criminal psychologist, also known as a counselor, social activist, and advocate. In a conversation about her career and this field, Anuja talks about how is criminal psychology different from other branches of psychology, how has an increase in crime rates changed her life, what methods and approaches does she use, and a lot more.
How is criminal psychology different from other psychology branches. Please explain?
Anuja Kapur: Criminal psychology is a form of science dealing with the mind and mental processes of a criminal. We, criminal psychologist, are required to study and examine the behaviour and thoughts of criminals as a professional. The line of work of a criminal psychologist is not only to cognise what gets someone to pull a crime, but also to study the responses after the crime is conducted.
The think which makes Criminal psychologist different from other psychology branches is that a criminal psychologist must have the following attributes:
- l Problem-solving because you will always be surrounded by problems to decrypt,
- l Oral and written communication skills;
- l Patience no matter what the situation is;
- l Ability to sympathise with and console relatives of victims;
- l Knowledge to identify and interpret structure.
What kind of approaches do you follow to solves your cases or treat your patients?
Anuja Kapur: Well, my approach is direct and conclusive. I don’t really beat around the bush and extend things that can be done in a jiffy. My sole purpose is a relief for my client. I will go to any extent to deliver the necessary. I also have a protocol where first I:
Profile- I understand the victim and the criminals involved
Consult- Use all my resources to interview and debate the points learned
Assess- Understand the mind and interpret their thought process
Research- Search every nook and corner to get to the bottom of the case
Apply- Apply every step mentioned to get the desired result.
As we know that the crime rate has increased in the past few years, how has it changed your life?
Anuja Kapur: Well, my life has always been dedicated in helping the victims to justice and this is what I will always do. On the other hand, things demand to be rectified drastically otherwise we will not able to survive in this heinous environment. Indian cities may become smarter and faster, but what about the attitude of the people who live in these cities. The execution made in the law is still not capable to blanket the disturbances. The number of crimes is still on a rise which depicts a mournful representation of India, not afraid of the law. The laws still lack a perfect implementation as the culprits are still making most of any small loopholes found in our law and order. The mindset of people also needs to be altered in a positive way. Everybody needs to be respected.
Dealing with such cases, how does all of this impact you personally?
Anuja Kapur: I have to keep myself really strong mentally and not be affected so my judgment is steady. Once emotions start to drop in our concentration can take a real hit. As the cases drag on the situations start taking a toll on you, this is when my patience and coping strategies need to kick in or I could lose control of the situation. Always staying practical and professional is what defines the job of a criminal psychologist. I have tried to do my bit by providing legal aid and reorganising them to be back with society again.
Share with us the most interesting or closest to your heart case?
Anuja Kapur: I love doing my job and this is what makes all my cases special to me. I put my entire heart and soul into the job I do each time I am at it. I am there to listen to their suffering and bring justice to them by acting as a cushion in their hour of need. The best thing about my current field is I am able to speak and be heard by a large audience as I am available on the national and international platforms trying to do my bit by being there.