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Legal rights awareness camps for Dalits

Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: In a bid to re-target and empower the Dalit population — especially in States like Uttar Pradesh, which is bound for Assembly elections in 2012 — the National Commission for Scheduled Castes, under its new chairman P.L. Punia, has decided to organise camps to apprise Dalits of their legal rights.

According to the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, these awareness camps will be held in all divisions and mandals of all States and Union Territories to disseminate information about the rights and safeguards provided in the Constitution of India for the Scheduled Caste population.

The Commission feels that unless the intended beneficiaries are made aware of various government schemes and programmes, they will not be able to enjoy their rights.

Constitutional rights include reservation in government services in Group A, B, C & D, and human rights protection by way of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989, and the PCR Act, 1955, with provisions for compensation.

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