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Hearing on SC/ST Act ruling adjourned

The court’s ruling resulted in a nationwide stir by members of the Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs), and some SC and ST members of Parliament from the BJP even wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging the Centre to intervene.

india Updated: May 16, 2018 23:12 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Supreme Court,SC,ST
View of Supreme Court of India in New Delhi.(AP File Photo)

The Supreme Court on Wednesday adjourned till July hearing the Centre’s plea urging the court to recall its March 20 verdict banning automatic arrests and registration of cases under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989.

The court’s ruling resulted in a nationwide stir by members of the Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs), and some SC and ST members of Parliament from the BJP even wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging the Centre to intervene.

While commenting on the case in the court, a bench of Justice AK Goel and Justice UU Lalit suggested that it was unfair to arrest someone just on the basis of a complaint.

They said: “Article 21 (right to life) is to be read in every provision of the atrocities act, otherwise fundamental rights cannot be enforced. Article 21 also cannot be denied by parliament. For example , arrest without just and fair procedure is constitutionally banned.”

Responding to this, India’s top law officer, attorney general KK Venugopal said: “The court cannot build a new edifice when there is none, nor substitute or supplant a new thing where there is none.”

Refusing to stay its verdict the court said, “A just society and fair procedure is a goal of a civilized society”.

First Published: May 16, 2018 23:11 IST