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Divya Jyoti Jaipuriar (Advocate/ 09868002365)     23 July 2012

Sc&st (poa) act




The Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 (SC&ST (POA) Act) provides for classification and offences and punishment to offenders who commit atrocities to members from SC and ST. For the purpose of this Act, the definition of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe is same as in Article 366 (clauses 24 and 25). Article 366 refers to Article 341 and 342 of the Constitution to define Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe respectively. The issue is that Article 341 and 342 provides for presidential notification to demarcate tribes, races or castes or a part of any group as Scheduled Castes or Scheduled Tribe with respect to any particular State/ UT.


My question is that there are several Castes and Tribes which are SC/ ST in a particular state but not recognised as SC/ ST in other state. In such a case, if a person belonging to SC/ ST category in one state, migrates to other state (where he is not recognised as SC/ ST), but still faces atrocities, whether such person can claim any entitlement/ relief under SC&ST (POA) Act?


If there are any judicial pronouncements dealing with this aspect, please share the same as well.




 6 Replies

pratik (self working)     28 July 2012

Good Question i also want to know.


SANJAY KUMAR (Lawyer)     30 July 2012

I am excited to reply. With Art.338-338A in place this question arising out of Art. 341 and 342 comes to a rest.

Art.338 envisages the formation of National Commission for Sceduled Castes with autonomy to inquire [(Art.338 (5) (b)] specific complaints with respect to the deprivation of rights and safeguards of the Sceduled Castes with powers of a Civil Court. Matters relating to state is forwarded to the concerned state governor who along with the report submits the details of action taken to the Legislature of the state. So in the process of taking action on the said report by the Governor, the  Sceduled Castes and Sceduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act,1989 is set in motion.

Ditto for Sceduled Tribes with Art.338 A.

Plese permit me to feel that SC&ST (POA) Act,1989 is just meant to outreach to dispense justice,else normal law of the land when followed in letter and spirit is effective,more effective for the subject.


I marvel at the vision of the architect of our Constitution.

1 Like

SANJAY KUMAR (Lawyer)     31 July 2012

Further, SC/ST status granted by the President of India is permanent, transportable everywhere in India from  state to state as per Govt. Of India circular dated 6.8.1984. Any observation to the contrary is violative of Art. 14,15,16,19, and Art.342; Rajesh Arjunbhai Patel v. State of Maharastra, AIR 1990 Bom 114 (117,118)

Divya Jyoti Jaipuriar (Advocate/ 09868002365)     06 August 2012

Thank you Mr Kumar for your reply. Can you share the circular dated 06.08.1984 please.

SANJAY KUMAR (Lawyer)     07 August 2012

I take note of it. You can get it early by net searching. Thanks.

Harsha Jade Puttaswamy (Common citizen)     17 October 2012


The justice to SC/ST is not as simple as written on paper. National Commission of SC&ST itself is a sham. It is deception for SC/ST. It has no powers whatsoever to punish the perpetrators of caste atrocity. If you file a complaint with NCSC or ST, no less than 1-2 years it takes to hear one's case. Only Chairman, some members of NCSC/ST belong to the SC/ST community. Majority of the staff and officials hail from the same dominant castes. There are reports of deliberate delay of atrocity cases, closure of cases in connivance with the dominant caste controlled government organizations. SC/ST face maximum atrocity in National Commission of SC/ST than in any Police Station or Village Panchayats. The Chairman/Members of NCSC&ST normally are politicians who would be busy most of the time on tour; this coupled with backlog cases, shortage of staff within this forum makes life of SC/ST a hell in India.


After 1-2 years of hearing, NCSC/ST merely forward the report to concerned departments or State Govts or President. Thats all the remedy. There is no one in Police Station to file FIR, no one to take action against perpetrators of caste injustice. Courts take decades. Advocates loot money. SC/ST are actually facing genocide. SC/ST should not have accepted 1932 Poona Pact. Many feel Jinnah did the right think by putting forward 2 nation theory. Alas, Indian nation is crumbling.....

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