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‘SC/ST Act Valid, Provision Of No Anticipatory Bail To Continue,’: Supreme Court

Mumbai: In a massive development, the Supreme Court on Monday upheld the constitutional validity of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Act, 2018.

The amendments did not restore any anticipatory bail provision which was earlier quashed by the apex court in March 2018.

A three-judge bench of the apex court, comprising justices Arun Mishra, Vineet Saran and Ravindra Bhat, delivered judgment on the review petitions.

Noting the widespread misuse of the SC / ST Act, especially against government employees and private individuals, the apex court had ruled that any complaint filed under the law would not result in immediate arrest. It was also ruled that under the SC / ST Act, a person would be investigated before arresting him.

However, resentment was seen among the people from the ruling Dalit community who observed the Bharat Bandh following the verdict of the apex court, during which mass violence was witnessed. This prompted the Center to file a review petition, which was also rejected by the court.

However, the protests forced the Center to rescind the decision and bring it back to original without advance bail provision. Subsequently, the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Bill, 2018 was passed by the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha on August 6 and 9, 2018 respectively.

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