ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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The New Judicial Amendment to SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act

The New Judicial Amendment to SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act

The Supreme Court in March 2020 passed a judgment that diluted the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. The judgment was passed under the pretext of protecting innocent persons from being booked under false cases, thereby preventing the misuse of the law. An attempt is made here to assess how relevant the judgment is and what role perception and interpretation play in deciding what constitutes as misuse of an important law.

The Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 (the SC/ST Act hereafter), which was amended in 2015, punished casteist slurs and denied anticipatory bail to the accused. Making the 1989 act more stringent, the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Act, 2015 added that actions like tonsuring of the head, moustache, or similar acts, which are derogatory to the dignity of the members of the Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs), will now be treated as atrocities.

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Updated On : 18th Oct, 2021

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