Report by Dipti Ranjan Kanungo, Bhubaneswar : The Chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes Buta Singh Thursday expressed his dissatisfaction on working of Orissa Government as the state government for not being “serious” enough in addressing the problems faced by the Scheduled Castes (SCs) and failing to stop the “growing atrocities” against them.
He expressed dissatisfaction over the state's record in dealing with atrocity cases and even accused the Orissa Government dispensation of being "callous" and "blocking information". The commission also rapped the government's tackling of cases against SC women, including the recent gangrape in Paikmal, and suggested formation of a SC/ST commission at the state level to deal with such issues.
Expressing his dismay over the state’s “failure” in disposing cases relating to atrocities against SC communities, Singh noted that as many as 6,389 of the total 6,555 cases were pending in 2006-07. Only 100-odd cases were settled, that too, in favour of the accused. He also alleged that police help the perpetrators instead of helping the SC victims.
He also alleged that the state government does not follow the reservation policy in recruitment formulated by central government, but instead follows its own “state policy”.
“The state is not following the reservation policy formulated by the centre but instead follows its own policy formulated in 1975. There is a huge backlog of scheduled caste vacancies. The state government is taking the plea of ban on recruitment. Instead of following the policy of post basis, the state is following vacancy basis recruitment,” he said.
Singh, who wrapped up his four-day trip to Orissa to review scheduled castes related issues with a media conference criticized the state's performance in checking the dropout rate among SC students and held that due to lack of effort from the government, 85 per cent of SC students from not able to complete school. "The Centre is providing funds for SC students' welfare, but in Orissa nothing has happened," he said.
In the Media conference the vice-chairman N M Kamble and members Mahendra Boodh, Mrutyunjaya Nayak and Satya Bahin, described the atrocity situation in Orissa as "very, very precarious" and alleged that police was helping the accused instead of the victims. "The prosecution rate is nil and conviction is zero. Cases are pending since the past 10 years, but the State Government is providing no relief although the law stipulates that relief to given to the victim within three months of filing of complaint. During the meet, the commission members met legislators, politicians, senior officials.