BHARAT BANDH ON SC/ST RULING

Following the SC order, the violent protests today hit life across the country with some states ordered the closure of educational institutions and curtailed communication and transport services, including rail, incidents of arson and vandalism were reported from Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and Punjab, among other states.

The Dalit groups are protesting against a March 20 order of a two-judge bench of the Supreme Court on Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. SC had removed restrictions on granting anticipatory bail and imposed a condition that a public servant could be prosecuted only after obtaining permission from higher authorities.

The BJP has the largest number of SC/ST and backward MPs all because of the support of the people,” he added. Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said on Monday, “The government does not agree with the reasoning given by the Supreme Court in this matter,” Mr. Prasad said, adding “On behalf of the Ministry of Social Justice, the government has filed a review petition. Government lawyers will be taking up the case with all preparation and authority at their command.”

Hundreds of protesters carrying swords, sticks, baseball bats and flags forced shopkeepers and other establishments to shut down in several parts of Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, and Punjab, while Section 144 has been imposed in multiple parts of North India. While four persons died in Madhya Pradesh, one died in Rajasthan’s Alwar and two died in Uttar Pradesh. There were also reports of a shooting, arson, and clashes with police forces.

The protestors in the morning blocked several trains in Bihar and Jharkhand, affecting railway services. Meanwhile, the government has moved a review petition in the Supreme Court today. Speaking to reporters, Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that the Centre has no intention of removing the provision of reservation for minorities. Congress chief Rahul Gandhi slammed the Modi government saying its attitude towards the minority community is derogatory.

There was a violent protest in Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan. Protests took place at several places in Bihar and Jharkhand also. In Punjab, Public transport services have been suspended and in Gujrat, the authorities canceled dozens of state transport bus routes in sensitive districts, fearing protests.

Curfew was imposed in Morena, Gwalior and Bhind districts after student leader Rahul Pathak died in firing in Morena district and several others were injured in the violence, Sub-Divisional Magistrate Umesh Shukla told PTI. “As far as the larger narrative of late, that discrimination against Dalits is becoming an issue for purely political aims, the BJP wishes to say with all authority at its command that the Narendra Modi government’s commitment to the welfare of Dalits and scheduled tribes is complete and total.

In Rajasthan, trains have been stopped on the Mumbai-Jaipur route. The Jaipur Metro has come to a halt. Protesters are staging a demonstration on the railway track near suburban railway stations in Jaipur. Several shops are shut. In Punjab, the CBSE has postponed class 12 and class 10 examinations scheduled to be held today at the request of the State government. The Punjab government has also taken a decision to keep all schools shut for the day. Public transport services across the State have been suspended.