No dilution in SC/ST Act: HM Rajnath

No dilution in SC/ST Act: HM Rajnath

Courtesy : NJ24/07/2018 20:00

 Asserting that there is no dilution of the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, Union Home Minister Rajnath singh on Wednesday said that no institution or individual can take away the rights of the marginalised given under the Constitution.

Speaking in the Rajya Sabha during Question Hour, Singh said that the government has already taken steps to safeguard the rights of SC/STs by amending the relevant law. “I want to assure the House the protection given under the Constitution to SC/ST persons cannot be taken away by any institution or any individual,” Singh said.

Parliament monsoon session Day 1

He also assured that the government has taken the required steps to strengthen the law, while it has also amended the rules and not just the act to ensure that no dilution takes place.

Singh was responding to the CPI leader D Raja’s statement raising concern over the recent Supreme Court order. The apex court in its March 20 verdict had put safeguards on arrest under the stringent SC/ST Act.

The home minister went on to talk about the government’s decision to set up special courts in order to improve the conviction rates, and said, “Our government felt that special courts are not sufficient, and therefore special exclusive courts were established.” About 194 such courts have been set up.

Special exclusive courts have been set up in 24 states, while special courts in 30 states, Minister of State for Home Affairs Hansraj Gangaram Ahir said. He further said that the states should also take interest if there is delay in setting up of the courts.

Citing the data compiled by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), Ahir said, that there was no rise in crimes against SC/ST persons between 2013 and 2016. In 2016, 40,801 cases were registered in crimes against SCs, while 6,568 cases against STs.

Section 15A of the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act of 1989, as amended, specifies that it shall be the duty and responsibility of the state to make arrangements for the protection of victims, their dependents, and witnesses against any kind of intimidation or coercion or inducement or violence or threats of violence, he added.

 

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