Punjab government not serious on SC issues, says national panel | chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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Punjab government not serious on SC issues, says national panel

The National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) has expressed serious concern over the state of affairs in Punjab with regard to implementation of provisions of the Prevention of Atrocities against Scheduled Castes Act.

chandigarh Updated: Jan 21, 2015 16:34 IST
HT Correspondent
National-Commission-for-Scheduled-Castes-chairman-PL-Punia--and-vice-chairman-Raj-Kumar-Verka-at-a-press-conference-in-Chandigarh-on-Tuesday-HT-photo
National-Commission-for-Scheduled-Castes-chairman-PL-Punia--and-vice-chairman-Raj-Kumar-Verka-at-a-press-conference-in-Chandigarh-on-Tuesday-HT-photo

The National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) has expressed serious concern over the state of affairs in Punjab with regard to implementation of provisions of the Prevention of Atrocities against Scheduled Castes Act.

Addressing mediapersons after holding a review meeting, NCSC chairman PL Punia said the State Vigilance and Monitoring Committee headed by chief minister Parkash Singh Badal had not held its meeting since 2006 even though it was required to hold it every six months. Similarly, meetings at the district levels were also not being held at regular intervals.

The chairman said the financial assistance of Rs 434 lakh under the Scheduled Caste Special Component Plan released by the Centre in 2010 had not been properly utilised and the utilisation certificate had not been submitted so far, resulting in non-release of funds for the years 2011 to 2014.

He said that as per the norms, 32% of plan funds needed to be assigned for plans related to scheduled castes. The state government had agreed that it could assign only 28%, but actually, the funds being spent exclusively for SC-related schemes were a meagre 2%, he claimed.

Punia said another serious lapse noticed by the commission was not filling of 20,000 vacancies in the SC category and the state government’s attention had been drawn towards this. On the atrocities against SC people, delays had been noticed in filing of FIRs as well as in trials leading to low conviction rate, he added.

He said the commission had only recommendatory powers, through it had written to the President to make its recommendations binding on the states.

Punia, however, lauded the ‘Helpline 181’ and ‘Sanjha Kendra’ effort of the state government in providing relief to people of this category, adding that he hoped these measures were actually operating at the ground level. He said it had recommended distribution of the surplus 18,000 acres of land in Punjab among SC families.


Chandigarh: The National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) has expressed serious concern over the state of affairs in Punjab with regard to implementation of provisions of the Prevention of Atrocities against Scheduled Castes Act.

Addressing mediapersons after holding a review meeting, NCSC chairman PL Punia said the State Vigilance and Monitoring Committee headed by chief minister Parkash Singh Badal had not held its meeting since 2006 even though it was required to hold it every six months. Similarly, meetings at the district levels were also not being held at regular intervals.

The chairman said the financial assistance of Rs 434 lakh under the Scheduled Caste Special Component Plan released by the Centre in 2010 had not been properly utilised and the utilisation certificate had not been submitted so far, resulting in non-release of funds for the years 2011 to 2014.

He said that as per the norms, 32% of plan funds needed to be assigned for plans related to scheduled castes. The state government had agreed that it could assign only 28%, but actually, the funds being spent exclusively for SC-related schemes were a meagre 2%, he claimed.