'Set up spl courts under SC/ST(Prevention of Atrocities) Act'
Chennai: A PIL has been filed in the Madras High Court, seeking a direction to the Tamil Nadu government to set up exclusive special courts under Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and Protection of Civil Rights Act in all atrocity-prone districts.
The first bench, comprising Chief Justice MY Eqbal and Justice T S Sivagnanam ordered notice to the authorities, returnable in four weeks.
Social activist A Narayanan in his petition said as per Section 14 of the SC and ST Act, government should have set up such courts in all districts. However, these were functioning only in Tiruchirappalli, Thanjavur, Tirunelveli and Madurai districts.
He said the 2011 census showed 19 per cent of people in the state belong to SC and 1.04 per cent ST. Tamil Nadu has the fifth largest Dalit population in the country.
Narayanan cited a report of the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, which said the list of "Identified Areas" or "Atrocity Prone Areas", designated by the Tamil Nadu government are 28 districts.