Orissa to open special courts for ST & SC atrocities cases
Wednesday, May 26, 2010 21:03 IST
Bhubaneshwar: Under attack for huge pendency of cases related to
atrocities on scheduled tribe (ST) and scheduled caste (SC)
population, Orissa government today decided to set up three special
courts to expedite justice to the victims.
"Three special courts will soon be set up at different places to
dispose cases registered under Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955
and SC & ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989," chief minister
Naveen Patnaik told reporters after a state level high power vigilance
and monitoring committee.
The state level committee's meeting was held after a gap of two years.
As 2009 was an election year, the state government could not hold the
meeting last year.
While directing the police to expedite probe into such cases, Patnaik
said district welfare officer and the collector would be held
responsible for not holding monitoring committee meeting regularly.
While the Orissa State SC & ST Youth and Students Council claimed that
about 10,700 cases of atrocity on ST and SC people were pending for
disposal, the state government said 614 cases were pending in courts
by end of 2009.
While 6136 cases under SC ST PoA Act was registered in Uttar Pradesh
followed by 4174 in Rajasthan, only 1355 cases could be made in
Orissa, said SC & ST development and minorities minister Bijay Ranjan
The minister, however, claimed that low disposal of atrocities cases
were due to lack of special courts for the ST and SC people besides
inadequate number of deputy superintendent of police rank officers in
"We have been seeking a provision for allowing inspector rank officer
to probe into the atrocities case instead of DSP rank officers,"
This apart, the state level high power vigilance and monitoring
committee also decided to launch awareness campaign among the ST and
SC populations so that more cases could be registered in the state.
As Orissa has more than 22 per cent of ST population, the committee
recommended translation of the acts into 10 major tribal dialects so
that the people could be made aware of their rights, the minister
"Legal aid cells will be opened in each block to help the victims in
getting support from government," the chief minister said adding
awareness was the key to bringing down atrocities on the ST and SC
population in the state.
A toll free number (155335) was also installed at the state capital to
receive complaints on ST and SC atrocities, an official said adding
that 37 cases were registered through free telephone facility within
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