Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan-led Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) today demanded that the Centre should bring an ordinance to counter the Supreme Court’s judgement on dilution of the ST/SC Act. Addressing reporters here, Paswan and his son Chirag said although the Centre has filed a review petition before the Supreme Court in this matter, the apex court will go on vacation from tomorrow and will resume on July 2. This, they said, will delay the hearing on the matter.
A vacation bench functions during this period. The apex court had on March 20 said that on “several occasions”, innocent citizens were being termed as accused and public servants deterred from performing their duties, which was never the intention of the legislature while enacting the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. The judgement led to widespread violence in several states.
The Centre had moved the apex court on April 2 seeking review of its judgement by which safeguards were put on the provisions for immediate arrest under the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. The government, in its review petition, told the apex court that its judgement would violate Article 21 of the Constitution for the SC/ST communities and sought restoration of the provisions of the Act.
Chirag said the apex court verdict on the legislation has made the ST/SC law “toothless” and it requires urgent redressal. “There has been no solution in sight even after three hearings in this matter. The Supreme Court’s vacation will commence soon and and the hearing will only take place after that. We have written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to bring in an ordinance to address this issue,” he said. The decision to bring in an ordinance was taken by the LJP, an ally of the BJP, in its meeting today. Chirag said he has also written to the prime minister in this regard.
Source: Financial Express