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Review of SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989

The Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) {PoA} Act, 1989, extends to the whole of India except Jammu and Kashmir, and responsibility for its implementation rests with State Governments/Union Territory Administrations.

The States/Union Territories are provided due Central assistance under a Centrally Sponsored Scheme, for effective implementation of the PoA Act. They are also addressed from time to time to, inter-alia, implement provisions of the Act in letter and spirit. A Committee under the Chairpersonship of Union Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment, constituted in 2006 also reviews implementation status of the PoA Act in various States/Union Territories. The Committee has so far held twenty meetings wherein implementation of the PoA Act was reviewed in 24 States and 4 Union Territories.

The continuing incidence of occurrence of offences of atrocities against members of SCs and STs leads to an impression that the deterrent effect of the PoA Act is not adequately felt by the accused. Occurrence of such incidents also highlights the need for more effective precautionary and preventive measures. Such aspects called for an assessment to consider amendments in the PoA Act. Accordingly, this Ministry, after due consultation process with the concerned agencies, has commenced the process of amendments in the Act.

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Tags: AsiaCabinet of IndiaImplementationIndiaJammu KashmirKashmirUnion TerritoriesUnion territory

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