ST/SC Act : Chouhan’s remark triggers internal rift in Modi government

Sep 21 : Dalit leader and BJP lawmaker Udit Raj  and Union Minister Ramdas Athawale got furious after  Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan  said that there will not be any arrests without investigation under the SC/ST Act in the state, thus appeasing upper caste groups, which has triggered internal struggle in the Narendra Modi government.

Chouhan  announced that he will ensure that the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act is “not misused” and no one will be arrested before an investigation.

Udit Raj said, “Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan  should take back his words as his statement  would make Dalits move away from the BJP.”

“I will talk to Chauhan Sahib. I will also talk to the national president Amit Shah. Why double character, double standards are being adopted in case of SC-ST only. Shivraj Singh Chauhan will have to  withdraw this statement, ” Udit Raj said.

The misuse of the (amended) SC/ST Act will not be allowed in MP. Only after a thorough probe, a case will be registered under it. To this end, a directive will be issued shortly,” said Chouhan in Chhindwara.

Alleging that Congress had levelled false allegations against him, Chouhan said, “Rajneeti vichaaron ke aadhaar par hoti hai, maine kabhi kisi ko lanchit nahi kiya. Congress kis disha mein rajneeti ko le jana chahti hai? MP shanti ka taapu raha hai. (Politics is based on ideologies. I never slapped false allegations against others. What political direction is Congress taking? MP has been a believer of peace.)”

RPI leader and Union Minister Ramdas Athawale said “a sense of fear or insecurity is being felt by the Dalits  and the ST/SC  community.” Athawale said that Chauhan should withdraw his statement because the Chief Minister is for both the backward and the upper castes.


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