One lakh cases of SC/ST atrocities pending: Govt

New Delhi: With over one lakh cases of atrocities against SCs and STs pending, the government is considering amendments in the existing law to fast-track trial, the Rajya Sabha was informed today.

Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Mukul Wasnik said during Question Hour that a concept note was sent to state governments for comments on amending the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989.

He said that out of over one lakh cases of atrocities pending at the end of 2010, the highest number of 19,939 cases were pending in Uttar Pradesh, followed by 13,590 cases in Madhya Pradesh.

Rajasthan had 11,524 cases pending at the end of 2010, Gujarat – 9,437, Odisha – 8,826, Bihar – 7,776 and Karnataka – 6,044, he said.

Wasnik, who did not specify the proposed amendments, said six states had not yet given their opinion. He said states were being impressed upon to set up special courts to try cases of atrocities on SCs and STs in places where conviction rate is low, pendency is high or registration of cases are high. He also said public prosecutors would be denotified if they did not perform their job well.