New Delhi, Apr 4 (PTI) The Delhi Congress today staged a protest on Parliament Street here against the “failure” of the Modi government in preventing the alleged dilution of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act through a Supreme Court order.
Delhi Congress president Ajay Maken led party workers, who marched from Jai Singh Road towards Parliament building. They were stopped by the police on Parliament Street.
Addressing party workers there, Maken said the SC/ST Act was passed under the prime ministership of Rajiv Gandhi to protect the Dalit community from atrocities and presently party chief Rahul Gandhi is raising his voice on these issues.
“Dalits are facing distress and many families stand devastated because of the atrocities committed on them,” he said.
All India Congress Committee general-secretary P L Punia alleged that atrocities committed on Dalits have touched an “all-time high” because of Narendra Modi government’s “lackadaisical approach”.
The BJP-led central government “failed” in properly putting up the case before the Supreme Court, resulting in the “dilution” of provision under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, the speakers alleged.
The Centre had moved a petition in the Supreme Court yesterday, seeking a review of the court’s March 20 verdict, which has put safeguards on arrest under the stringent Act.
On March 20, the court had said government servants should not be arrested without prior sanction and private citizens too should be arrested only after an inquiry under the law.
Yesterday, it said “no provisions of the SC/ST Act have been diluted” and refused to keep in abeyance the verdict.
The verdict is being criticised by Dalit groups and opposition parties, who say the “dilution” of the Act will increase discrimination and crimes against Dalits.
Delhi Congress has planned to hold 25 public meetings on the issue over the next week.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.