SC/ST Act: Government to file review petition before Supreme Court tomorrow

01 April 2018, 11:00 PM
SC/ST Act: Government to file review petition before Supreme Court tomorrow (Source: PTI)
SC/ST Act: Government to file review petition before Supreme Court tomorrow (Source: PTI)

Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Sunday said that the government will file a review petition before the Supreme Court on Monday against court’s judgement on banning the automatic arrest and registration of cases for alleged harassment of the Scheduled Castes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) under the SC/ST Act.

The sources of the government said that as per the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, this judgement could weaken the provisions of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989.

Ravi Shankar Prasad took to Twitter to announce the development, and tweeted, “Review petition by the Government against the SC judgement on SC/ST Protection Act shall be filed positively on tomorrow, Monday, April 2.”

Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan appealed to the people to remain calm as the Centre will file a review petition on Monday.

He tweeted, “It is my request to all the organizations and opposition parties who have been agitating on the decision of the Supreme Court regarding the issue of the SC/ST Act that the Centre has decided to file a review petition in the court on April 2 to withdraw the proposed judgement.”

Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment TC Gehlot confirmed that the government will file a review petition. He tweeted, “Center will file review petition tomorrow on SC's decision in SC-ST act.”

Gehlot, on Friday, appealed to all organisations and Opposition to take back the protest and give time to the Centre to work on the situation.

Several Dalit organisations had called for a countrywide strike on Monday to protest against court’s March 20 verdict that safeguards public from random arrests under the SC/ST Act.

"All educational institutions to remain closed and mobile Internet services to be suspended in the state tomorrow in the wake of bandh called by several Dalit organisations against the amendment under the SC/ST Act," a circular said.

On Saturday, Congress president Rahul Gandhi, along with other Opposition leaders met President Ram Nath Kovind to share their concerns against the top court’s ruling.

Gandhi took to Twitter and said, “The Supreme Court ruling diluting provisions of arrest in the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act comes in the backdrop of growing atrocities against Dalits & Adivasis across India. Leaders from opposition parties will meet President Kovind this evening to share their concerns.”

The National Commission for Scheduled Casted (NSCS) and the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) also expressed their concerns and said that the original Act as it had existed before should be restored.

The top court had recently banned the automatic arrests and registration of criminal cases under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. The law protects the SC/ST communities from atrocities and discrimination.

The Act was amended by the Supreme Court lately to include new crimes and guarantee a speedy justice to the victims. The revised law came into effect from January 26, 2016.

First Published: Sunday, April 01, 2018 10:43 PM
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