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National Coalition on SCP TSP condemns PMO for blocking Dalit Adivasi Budget Bill
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National Coalition on SCP TSP condemns PMO for blocking Dalit Adivasi Budget Bill

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National Coalition on SCP TSP Legislation condemns the Prime Minster’s Office for deliberately blocking the Dalit Adivasi Budget Bill

[Via Beena J Pallical]

The national coalition on SCP TSP Legislation (NACSTL) strongly condemns the PMO’s blocking the Bill from being placed in the Cabinet and on to the Parliament. It is engaging in delay tactics by directing the Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment to place it before the Committee of Secretaries. It has been quite a struggle for many Dalit & Adivasi/Tribal movements and activists in demanding effective implementation of this policy through legislation. We believe that this addressed the massive development gap that exists amongst the Dalit/Adivasi/Tribal and the dominant caste communities today. This bill has been drafted several months ago and has been around for several series of vetting and finally reached the PMO office to be placed in the parliament. Prior to this, about two years ago National Advisory Council has also deliberated on this and directed the PMO to ensure effective implementation of SCP (special Component Plan for SCs) and TSP (Tribal Sub Plan). With elections round the corner and the congress wooing for votes, the absolute discontent amongst the Dalit & Adivasis communities would only get worse if this bill is not passed in this session.

The Minister of Social Justice & Empowerment and the Minister for Tribal Affairs has been consistently focused on getting this bill passed and has urged the PMO to relook at the decision and ensure that this is placed before the Cabinet and then passed in the parliament. Dalit Activist and Convenor of NACSTL Mr Paul Divakar says “The blocking of this Dalit Adivasi Budget Legislation is a crime. It is a continued denial of Dalit and Adivasi/Tribal Right to Plan and Right to Resources. The PMO and the government must make its stand clear whether it protects and promotes the Dalit and Tribal/Adivasi rights or not. Community will not tolerate this continued cheating of Dalits and Tribals/Adivasis”

These instruments, TSP and SCP when introduced in 1974 & 1979 was unprecedented and was to boost the development and empowerment of Dalits & Adivasis, however this has been marred by ineffective implementation and colossal diversions of funds. The current situation of the vulnerable groups in this country highlights the inadequacies of the current policies to address this acute problem of poverty and economic injustice. There has been extensive pressure from the National coalition on SCP TSP Legislation and other community lead organizations from the social spectrum and also many ministers and MPs’ support to demand to legislate SCP TSP to positively impact the socio economic status of communities but also to prevent diversion of funds. The resistance from the PMO office indicates serious concerns of the commitment of the government and their interest in the development of the marginalized communities. If implemented effectively, this policy will affect the lives of millions of Dalits and Adivasis by ensuring their economic rights and justice. However, the government seems to have taken an anti–people stand by refusing to discuss and place it in the parliament. This bill strengthens the economic democracy and will eventually stimulate the economic growth of this country.

Manorama Ekka, Co-Convenor of NACSTL says: “we are disappointed that the government has refused to recognize the urgency of this legislation and its impact on the communities, we do hope that our voices will be heard and that they will soon decide to place it for discussions in the parliament”

The demand of NACSTL is that the proposed bill should be placed and passed in the parliament in the winter session itself as it would effectively be the last session before the general elections this year. Over the last one year the coalition has held consultations across the country with Adivasi & Dalit groups and in the process was building public opinion on this issue.

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For further details contact: Beena Pallicalat 9958797404/ beena@ncdhr.org.in

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