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CM Chouhan Moves to Dilute SC/ST Act in Poll-Bound MP to Placate Protesting Upper Castes

By: Vivek Trivedi

News18

Last Updated: September 21, 2018, 10:27 IST

File photo of former Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan. (File Photo: PTI)

File photo of former Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan. (File Photo: PTI)

The chief minister’s clarification came a day ahead of the Brahmin Mahakumbh to be held in Ujjain. The mega event, among other things, plans to protest against the SC/ST Act.

Bhopal: Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Thursday said misuse of the SC/ST Act (Prevention of Atrocities) would not be allowed in the state, adding that no arrests would be made without investigation.

Chouhan’s remarks came on a day when upper caste organisations protesting against the Act showed black flags in front of Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) offices and also barged into the bungalow of PWD minister Rampal Singh, only to face police action.

The chief minister, who was touring Balaghat, said: “The rights of Samanya, OBC, Scheduled Caste (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) will be taken care of in the state.” He added that no specific directives were required for the same and repeated the announcement through his Twitter handle.

The chief minister’s clarification came a day ahead of the Brahmin Mahakumbh to be held in Ujjain. The mega event, among other things, plans to protest against the SC/ST Act.

Hiralal Trivedi, patron of the Samanya Pichhra Alpsankhyak Kalyan Samaj (SAPAKS) that is leading the charge against the Act, called Chouhan’s remarks an ‘eyewash’, saying the chief minister could not speak against the Supreme Court and Parliament which passed the relevant amendments. “The CM is trying to fool people with his statement,” said Trivedi, adding that the struggle against the Act would continue.

Meanwhile, citing an example from the epic Mahabharata, former MP chief minister Babulal Gaur backed the demands of upper castes, saying “general category people who help us (BJP) win feel that justice has not been done to them”.

first published:September 21, 2018, 07:29 IST
last updated:September 21, 2018, 10:27 IST