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Dalits' condition worst in UP, says SC panel

Source: PTI
June 12, 2008 18:25 IST
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In a virtual snub to the Mayawati government in Uttar Pradesh, the National Commission for Scheduled Castes on Thursday said the state had the "worst track record" across the country in terms of atrocities on Dalits.

"Uttar Pradesh continues to be at the top in terms of the number of cases of atrocities against Dalits reported in states across the country. The latest data available with us is for 2006 when the state recorded a whopping 52,827 such cases," chairman of the Commission Buta Singh said.

Singh was leading a three-member delegation which visited Kaanti, a remote Dalit-dominated village in the district that has been in the grip of tension for the last one week over the controversial purchase of a piece of land by a retired police personnel. Singh claimed the depressed classes were being driven to the wall in the state "due to an unsympathetic administration which has scant respect for the constitutional provisions made for the weaker sections".

The former Union minister, who asserted that his visit here was "totally apolitical", however, took potshots at Chief Minister Mayawati, saying "She apparently has no control over the administration and the police as a result of which her proclaimed commitment to the cause of the Dalits was now under scanner."

Strongly condemning the "brutal attack on women, children and old people" in Kaanti on January 7, when an attempt was made to get the land vacated with the help of local police, Singh however maintained that reports of injuries to a number of police personnel in retaliatory violence were "totally false".

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