The Dima Hasao District Congress Committee (DHDCC) submitted a memorandum to Prime Minister through the Deputy Commissioner of Dima Hasao demanding restoration and implementation of the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 with a view to end atrocities against the SC/STs of the country.
Through the memorandum, the Dima Hasao District Congress Committee sought the PM’s intervention in the implementation of the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 so that SC/STs’ social justice is ensured and their constitutional rights are safeguarded.
This Act containing six chapters was amended and re-implemented in 2016 so that the constitutional rights and other benefits granted by the government to the SC/ST communities cannot be infringed. But it is quite unfortunate that the way the Supreme Court, which is the custodian of the fundamental rights, has reduced the powers of SC/ST prevention of Atrocities Act, 1989 and 2016; the recent order of the Supreme Court would not be able to provide adequate protection of the SC/ST communities.
“The Supreme Court of India has given a judgment on March 20, 2018 that in the case of Subhas Kashinath Mahajan in Maharashtra has caused distress among SC/STs as it will make it more difficult to protect themselves from atrocities. We believe that Additional Solicitor General (ASG) representing the Central government failed to defend the rights of the SC/STs in the Supreme Court for want of proper guidance from the central government,” the DHDCC stated.
The Supreme Court has now ordered that a preliminary inquiry may be conducted by the DSP concerned to find out whether the allegation make out a case under the Atrocities Act and that the allegations are not frivolously motivated. Arrest of public servant, who is alleged to have committed any crime and atrocity against SC/STs, can only be made, after approval of the appointing authority and of a non-public servant after approval by the SSP.
“These guidelines of Supreme Court literally make the Act ineffective in safeguarding the SC/STs from atrocities,” the DHDCC stated.
DHDCC President Nirmal Langthasa said, “Considering the seriousness of this issue, we the Dima Hasao District Congress Committee (DHDCC) and SC/ST Department of DHDCC demand the Prime Minister to use his good office and seek reconsideration in the Supreme Court to review its earlier order and restore the earlier Act of SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act 1989 & 2016 respectively in the greater interest of SC/ST people of India.”
The memorandum was signed by Nirmal Langthasa, President, Dima Hasao District Congress Committee, Rudrajit Laisram, Vice-President, DHDCC, Mayanon Kemprai, Vice-president, DHDCC, Obasting Pachoun, Vice-President, Kalijay Sengyung, General Secretary, DHDCC, Depoloal Hojai, General Secretary, Aripom Bodo, Chairman, ST Department and Sarat Ch Das, Chairman, SC Department.