New Delhi: Ignoring the sentiments, deep-seated resentment and frustration of those belonging to the unreserved categories, the Lok Sabha on Monday (6 August 2018) unanimously passed a Bill to restore the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act in its original form and overturn a Supreme Court order that made certain safeguards mandatory for arrests under this law.
The Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill 2018 rules out any provision for anticipatory bail for a person accused of atrocities against SC/STs, irrespective of any court order.
It also provides that no preliminary enquiry will be required for registering a criminal case and an arrest under this law would not be subject to any approval.
Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment Thaawar Chand Gehlot said in the House that the NDA government was in favour of reservation for SCs/STs.
The Opposition parties had announced a nationwide protest later in August to demand restoration of the provisions of the original SC/ST law in support of the SCs and STs, who were alleging that that the Supreme court had diluted the law.
The passage of the Bill in Lok Sabha on Monday is being viewed as a strategic move by the BJP-led NDA Government to take the wind out of the Opposition’s sail to woo the SCs and STs.