The Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Atrocities Prevention) Act, 1989 is generally referred to as the POA, the SC/ST Act, the Atrocities Prevention Act, or simply the Atrocities Act. On September 9, 1989, the SC/ST Act was passed. The prevention of Atrocities act protects the marginalized communities against discrimination and atrocities. The act precludes the commission of offences of atrocities against the representatives of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes from being directed by the Special Courts and the Exclusive Special Courts to deal with such offences and to provide for the relief and rehabilitation of the victims of such offences and related matters, in addition to or incidentally connected with the This act provides several offences that are punishable under the law to prevent the age-old practices against the Schedule caste & scheduled tribes that have been saturated in the people of India. With time and with amendments in the act itself, the government has added and substituted many things in the act to hold its importance in the protection of the Scheduled caste and Schedule tribe people.
Under the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities), some new offences of atrocities have been included in the act. Section 3 of this act talks in detail about the Punishments for offences and atrocities, what are the actions to be treated as offences. The Amendment Act, 2015 amends certain existing categories and adds new categories of actions to be treated as offences. The new offences that have been added under section 3, sub-section 1 are (a) Garlanding with footwear, (b) Imposing or threatening a social or economic boycott,(c) openly insulting SCs or STs by caste name, (d) attempting to foster feelings of ill-will toward SCs or STs or disrespecting any highly esteemed deceased person, and (e) forcing human or animal carcasses to be disposed of or transported, or manual scavenging. So basically whoever, not being a member of a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe, does any of these acts mentioned under section 3 of the SC/ST Act will be held liable.
The Amendment Act, 2015, also added the offences related to the Assault or sexual exploitation of an SC or ST woman under section 3, s.s.1., It says whoever, not being a member of a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe (a) Intentionally affects a woman belonging to a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe, recognizing that she belongs to a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe, if the touching act is sexual and is without the consent of the receiver (b) It is also considered an offence to use words, actions or movements of a sexual nature against a woman belonging to a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe, knowing that she belongs to a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe, or (c) to devote an SC or ST woman to a temple as a devadasi, or any similar activity. The word 'consent' is characterized as an unambiguous voluntary agreement when the individual expresses a willingness to engage in specific activities through language, gestures, or any means of non-verbal communication.. If because of that fact a woman belonging to a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe who does not give physical resistance to any act of a sexual nature is not the sole reason, consent to sexual activity must be considered. Still, a woman's sexual history, including with the offender, shall not imply consent or mitigate the offence..
The Amendment Act, 2015, also added the offences related to the obstruction or prevention of a member of a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe under section 3, s.s.1.. Anyone who is not a member of a Scheduled Caste or Scheduled Tribe forbids an SC or ST from undertaking (a) to use common property facilities, (c) to enter any place of worship open to the public, and (d) to enter any educational institution, hospital, clinic, primary health centre, store, public entertainment centre or any other public place; or to use any utensils or articles. An individual who commits any of the offences referred to in section 3 of the SC/ST Act shall be punishable by a term of imprisonment of not less than six months, but which may be extended to five years and by a fine.
The SC/ST Act protects social disabilities such as a denial of access to certain places and to use a familiar passage, personal atrocities like forceful drinking or eating of inedible food, sexual exploitation, injury etc., and atrocities affecting properties, malicious prosecution, political disabilities and economic exploitation. The Amendment Act, 2015 doesn't only add certain offences that are punishable, but it also amends the rights of the victims and witnesses. It means that if the accused had personal knowledge of the victim or his kin, the court presumes that the accused was aware of the victim's caste or tribal origin unless the contrary is proven. It also specifies the duties that a public servant can’t neglect relating to SCs or STs. It also requires the formation of Exclusive Special Courts for the sole purpose of prosecuting offences under the POA Act to allow for the speedy and expeditious disposal of cases. Regardless of these amendments in the act we still see the atrocities committed to Schedule caste & scheduled tribes people. We may think we live in modern India. Still, if we look at rural India, we can see how people are divided in the name of caste that it is so engraved in the minds of people that even the majority people of modern India will also not talk about the discriminating issues in their own country even though they post about the same issues of other nations.
Bail is a kind of Security which is given by the accused to the court that he will attend the proceedings against the accusations made upon him and include personal bond and bail bond.
LGBT is an acronym for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender. This movement is intended to emphasize the diversity of sexuality and gender identity-based cultures.