Supreme Court upholds constitutional validity of SC/ST Amendment Act,2018

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News:The Supreme Court has upheld the constitutional validity of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Amendment Act,2018.

Facts:

Background:

  • In Subhash Kashinath Mahajan v. State of Maharashtra 2018, the Supreme Court had diluted the stringent provisions of SC/ST Act.
  • The court had ruled that preliminary sanction would be needed before charging officials under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act,1989.It had also allowed anticipatory bail.
  • Following this,the government filed a review petition in the Supreme Court and subsequently amended the 1989 Act through SC/ST Amendment Act,2018.

About SC/ST Amendment Act,2018:The amendment inserted the following provisions to the to the original Act:

  • Preliminary enquiry shall not be required for registration of a First Information Report against any person.
  • The arrest of a person accused of having committed an offence under the Act would not require any approval.
  • The provisions of Section 438 of the Code of Criminal Procedure which deals with anticipatory bail shall not apply to a case under this Act, notwithstanding any judgment or order of any Court.