SC/ST Act: Centre ‘doesn’t agree with apex court ruling’, files review petition in Supreme Court

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New Delhi | Updated: April 2, 2018 3:15:03 PM

The Supreme Court had last month diluted stringent provisions in the SC/ST Act. The order triggered a nationwide outrage with opposition parties alleging that the changes made by the court will make the law ineffective.

Ravi Shankar Prasad, Law Ministry, Supreme Court, SC/ST ActRavi Shankar Prasad says government doesn’t agree to SC ruling

The Centre today filed a review petition in the Supreme Court over a recent judgement that was seen as diluting certain strigent provisions in the SC/ST Act. Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad confirmed that the government has filed a comprehensive petition in the apex court which will be presented before the top court by senior lawyers.

Speaking to reporters here, Prasad said that government doesn’t agree with the SC’s ruling and there’s no intention of changing provision of reservation for minorities.

The Minister said that NDA government is committed for the welfare of Dalits and STs. He said that the BJP has largest number of SC, ST and OBCs MPs and MLAs and this attests people belonging to these sections support the ruling party.

The government’s moves come following criticism by the opposition parties and some of its own leaders who said that the apex court order will make the law ineffective. The law was amended by the government recently to deliver speedy justice to the victims of the SC/ST communities. The amended law had come into effect from January 26, 2016.

Last week, a delegation of Dalit MPs and Ministers led by Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan had met Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss the matter. Earlier, opposition MPs had called on the President and sought his intervention.

The SC had last month passed an order, which, experts said, dilutes certain provisions of the Act. Besides laying down new norms, the court had ruled that no government servant be arrested merely on the basis of a complaint. It had directed that before arresting an official, a prior approval from the competent authority be mandatory now onwards. The court had also introduced a provision of anticipatory bail.

Meanwhile, Dalits groups have called for a Bharat Bandh today to protest against the changes in the Act.

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