Home Global News Dalits Groups Call ‘Bharat Bandh’ Against Supreme Court SC/ST Ruling

Dalits Groups Call ‘Bharat Bandh’ Against Supreme Court SC/ST Ruling

bharat bandh

bharat bandh

New Delhi: Dalit organizations have called for a “Bharat Bandh” on Monday to protest against the Supreme Court’s order on Schedule cast and Schedule Tribes Act. Dalit organizations are staging a protest in response to the Supreme Court’s ruling which they feel is the dilution of the SC/ST Prevention Act.

The Supreme Court gave its verdict in a Petition filed by Subhash Kasinath Mahajan, Director of Maharashtra Technical Education, challenging an order of the Bombay high court. The court had rejected Mahajan’s plea contesting an FIR against him for disallowing prosecution of a department official. The official had been charged with making adverse remarks against an employee.

The situation is very tense in Punjab as the state has the highest population of Scheduled Castes in the country. Captain Amarinder Singh government has decided to suspend the services of public transport across the state. Internet services were also suspended from 5 pm Sunday and continued on till 11 pm today. The CM has also requested Army to remain on “stand-by.”

The CBSE has postponed board examinations of class 10 and 12 scheduled to be held today. The state government has also issued a notification to keep all schools shut for the day. “During Bandh, the PRTC, Punjab Roadways and Buses would not move on roads and the services of these buses would remain suspended,” said a press release by Punjab’s Information and Public Relations Department.

Following the protest, various reports of agitation, blockade of roads and train tracks are being reported since morning.

Members of Bhim Sena and Bajrang Dal clashed with each other in Madhya Pradesh’s Bhind during the protest. Meanwhile, protesters have blocked trains in Punjab’s Patiala, Bihar, and Odisha. Violence also reportedly erupted in Agra during the stir and protesters were seen damaging public and private properties.

The bandh call was given by Dalit group Sanvidhaan Bachao Sangharash Committee and later was backed by All India Adi Dharam Mission and All India Adi Dharam Sadhu Samaj.

In Gujarat, the Congress party has given its support to the protest. The party has urged the Centre to file a review petition. On March 20, the Supreme Court banned automatic arrests and registration of criminal cases under the SC/ST Act. The apex court said public servants can’t be prosecuted without the approval of the appointing authority, and private citizens too should be arrested only after an inquiry under the law.

But Dalit organizations and political parties fear the alleged dilution of the provision might weaken the law.

“Central government to file a review petition against the order positively on Monday,” Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad tweeted.

Bharat Bandh

A delegation of Dalit lawmakers is also scheduled to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi to brief him of the issues concerning the SCs and STs, including the unhappiness among the community over the apex court verdict on SC/ST Act.