National Commission for Scheduled Castes has attributed the increasing atrocities on the SC population in Uttar Pradesh to land disputes mostly involving OBCs. Among the States, UP tops the list of crime against the SCs.
The panel in its annual report (2004-05) submitted to President APJ Abdul Kalam, has expressed serious concern on the high acquittal rate and recommended proper training and sensitization of police officials about the provisions and implementation of various SC related laws.
Disclosing the salient features of the report, Commission’s Vice-Chairman Fakirbhai Vaghela pointed out that conviction rate in cases of atrocities against SC population was a measly 29.08 per cent in 2005.
On UP front, Vaghela said an overwhelming majority of the 12,000 complaints of atrocities, mostly against the members of OBCs, received by the Commission were on account of land disputes. The reason being that most of the communities figuring in the State’s OBC list were powerful landowners, he added.
The Commission has seriously viewed the inadequate representation to SCs in various categories of Government services and has demanded extending reservation in promotion at all levels. Citing a DOPT report, Vaghela said the SC representation in the Central services was merely 18.44 per cent which includes: Group A 12.2 per cent, Group B 14. 5 per cent, Group C 16.9 per cent and Group D ( 18.4 per cent excluding safai karamcharis).
On the creamy layer controversy, he said the Commission was opposed to the concept. The Reservation provided to SC/STs was not only due to economic reasons. It was more on account of social factors such as untouchability which still persisted in the society. He reiterated the Commission’s demand to bring the Reservation issue under the ambit of the Constitution’s ninth schedule.
Under the Economic and Social head the Commission has recommended proper coaching to the SC candidates taking various competitive examinations, increased allocation of funds in the education sector and timely disbursal of pre and post-matric scholarship. Basic amenities in predominantly SC inhabitated areas to be at par with other localities.
On the Service safeguard front, it has demanded that the Centre should calculate the backlog/shortfall of SCs in services and launch a special recruitment drive to fill the slots. Similar, the panel has suggested a review of the reasons for high acquittal rate in cases of atrocities against SCs and timely payment of compensation to the victims.