A functionary of the Madhya Pradesh High Court Bar Association on Friday claimed the body has found in a survey that 75 per cent of the people booked under the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act in 2015-16 were acquitted, showing “rampant misuse” of the law.
All cases under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act filed in the financial year 2015-16 across the three High Court benches and 90 per cent district courts in the state were included in the survey, Bar Association president Adarsh Muni Trivedi said.
“It was found that 75 per cent of those accused under the SC/ST Act get acquitted. This shows the rampant misuse of the provisions of the Act,” he claimed.
Giving other statistics of the survey, Trivedi said that 81 per cent people who faced cases under the SC/ST Act belonged to Other Backward Classes (OBC) communities.
“Fourteen per cent of the accused are from upper caste communities while the remaining five per cent are from minority groups,” he said.
He further informed that 90 per cent of all cases under this Act were filed by people belonging to Scheduled Castes and the rest 10 per cent were from Scheduled Tribes.
“Most of these cases were heard in district courts. On the basis of merit, the accused in 75 per cent of SC/ST Act cases were acquitted,” Trivedi said, quoting the survey.
Madhya Pradesh, over the past several days, has been witnessing protests from various communities against the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill 2018 which was passed by Parliament in August.
The Supreme Court, on March 20, had placed safeguards on the provisions for immediate arrest under the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989.
The amendment bill passed in Parliament, however, restored some stringent provisions of the SC/ST Act.
Almost 20,000 people from several Brahmin organisations Friday held protests in Ujjain against the amendments to the SC/ST Act and demanded that they be withdrawn.