Accountability of officials is essential to strengthen the implementation of the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, senior officials said at the district consultation on the strengthening of the Act.

Participating in the third district consultation, part of the State-wide consultation, held here on Friday, Superintendent of Police Visakhapatnam Rural G Srinivas and Joint Director Social Welfare Department Srinivasan pointed out that there were no provisions in the law to hold the officials accountable for the delays.

The entire police force is normally pressed into maintaining law and order and the department does not have enough resources or time for seriously investigating the SC, ST (PoA) complaints, SP Rural said and suggested that two DSPs be appointed only to handle the cases.

He urged that special courts be set up to clear the cases on a fast track. Pointing out that the Social Welfare Department has a major role in providing relief to the victim, JD Social Welfare said that the Department was supporting the move to bring in amendments in the Act.

Convenor for the State Coalition for Strengthening of SC, ST (PoA) Act and president Dalit Stree Shakti G Jhansi, Professor of law in Damodaram Sanjeevaiah National Law University K. Sudha, and State programme manager Dalit Stree Shakti Daniel Prakash also spoke.

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