Odisha sets up SC and ST Protection Cell

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government has set up a state level SC & ST Protection Cell to monitor the progress in enforcement of laws for protecting interest of Dalits and tribals.

This was stated by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik while addressing the High Power Vigilance and Monitoring Committee meeting here.

"A full time Inspector General of Police (IGP) along with the required number of deputy superintendents of police (DSPs) have been appointed in the cell," Patnaik said.

The mandate of the cell is to monitor the progress of enforcement of SC & ST (prevention and atrocities) Act, 1989 and submit a monthly report to the state government, Patnaik said.

Stating that the state government was committed to the overall socio-economic development of the Dalits and tribals, the Chief Minister said police would firmly deal with the cases of atrocities against SCs and STs.

Meanwhile, Patnaik said the state government had increased the amount of compensation to the victims of atrocities by 150 per cent. "Cases of atrocities should not be viewed as a law and order issue alone. It is a socio-economic issue and the state government therefore strives to bridge the gap between different social groups by improving the overall socio-economic status of the Dalits and tribals," Patnaik said.