Shimla: Pendency of atrocity against scheduled cast cases in Himachal, Haryana and Punjab was high, conviction rate was below national average and the state governments needed to look at how to address this issue, Mukul Wasnik, union minister for social justice and empowerment stated before the media.
Speaking to reporters after holding a review meeting about implementation of Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955 and Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, the minister pointed out that out of 698 cases of atrocities from 2007 to 2009 with the courts , there were only 18 convictions (13%), 120 acquittals and as many as 533 (76.4%) cases were still pending in Himachal courts, he added.
In Haryana of the 2349 cases before courts, there were 110 (18%) convictions , 501 acquittals and 1736 (74%) cases wer e still pending in courts. Likewise in Punjab, he said, of the 965 cases before courts in 3 years, there were 27 (13%) convictions, 180 acquittals and 758 (78.5%) cases were pending.
â€œThe three states have been asked to reduce the pendency of prevention of atrocity cases and set up exclusive special courts in districts where pendency was high,â€ said Wasnik.
In three years police registered 245 caste related atrocity cases in Himachal, 869 in Haryana and 386 in Punjab.
When question about Khap Panchayats in Haryana that were violating the Prevention of Civil Liberties Act, the minister evaded a direct response saying â€œthe matter was not discussed.â€