A day after the Union Cabinet approved the restoration of the original provisions of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Bill, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday said the bill will be tabled during the ongoing monsoon session of the Parliament.
“The government has already approved the restoration of the original bill yesterday. We will introduce the bill and want to pass it in this session of parliament,” he said in Lok Sabha.
Rajnath Singh’s statement came after Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge demanded an ordinance for SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities to be brought soon.
“The government has not done anything to nullify the Supreme Court order. You bring ordinances for every small issue, why didn’t you bring an ordinance for this issue,” he asked.
On August 1, the Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, decided to negate the Supreme Court ruling of March 20 that had barred immediate arrests in cases registered under the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act.
The SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill, which came amid the deadline fixed by Dalit organisations and LJP (Lok Janshakti Party) to overturn the ruling, restored the original provisions of arresting the accused over suspicion of offence against the weakest section of the society.
The SC/ST Act protects the marginalised communities against discrimination and atrocities.
The Supreme Court verdict was widely criticised by the Dalit organisations and the Opposition who claimed that the dilution of the Act will lead to more discrimination and crime against the backward community.
On April 2, Dalit organisations across the country staged a massive protest against the judgment of the top court.
Later, the Centre filed a review petition against the ruling, which went in vain as the top court refused to stay its order and asked all parties to submit detailed replies.
On a related note, all the Dalit groups have called for a ‘Bharat Bandh’ protest on August 9 against the ruling of the top court.
The LJP, which is an ally of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), also threatened to join the protest.(Minimal edits applied, story generated from syndicated ANI feed)