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Dilution Shakes the Very Objective of SC/ST Act, Centre Tells SC in Review Petition

The petition stated that the SC judgment adversely affects a substantial portion of the population and runs in contrary to the policy of the Parliament.

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Updated:April 2, 2018, 6:16 PM IST
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Dilution Shakes the Very Objective of SC/ST Act, Centre Tells SC in Review Petition
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New Delhi: The central government on Monday moved the Supreme Court to seek recall of its judgment that ruled that there would be no automatic arrest of an accused following a complaint moved under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989.

Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad tried to reassure the Dalits that the government has filed a "comprehensive" petition against the order that is behind the protests sweeping the country and have led to the death of at least six people.

“We do not agree with the Supreme Court order. Senior lawyers will argue (the case) with all authority," the minister said even as the government came under severe criticism for the delay in filing the review petition.

The Supreme Court had held on March 20 that police will hold an inquiry to ascertain the veracity of the complaint filed under the Act before acting on it. The Centre, in its review petition, urged the apex court to reverse its decision as “dilution of the law would shake the very object of the Act.”

The petition stated that the SC judgment adversely affects a substantial portion of the population and runs in contrary to the policy of the Parliament.

“The dilution of law will give liberty to the accused to misuse it and terrorise the victims and also prevent investigation,” it said, adding that it would deprive the members of SC/ST community rights guaranteed to them under the Constitution.

The court had also said that before action against a government employee against whom a complaint has been filed for something he did in the discharge of his official duties, the prior sanction of higher authorities is a must. In the case of common people, the complaint would be examined by the Senior Superintendent of Police in a district.

Watch: An explainer on why Dalits took to the streets in protest

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| Edited by: Tarun Bhardwaj
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