Karnataka Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa on Monday directed the officials attached to Civil Rights Enforcement (CRE) Cell to ensure speedy disposal of cases of atrocities committed on Dalits and promised to set up more special courts to try such cases.

There are instances of witnesses turning hostile as with delay in cases and guilty going scot-free, a trend which needs to be put an end to, Mr. Yeddyurappa told reporters after chairing the meeting of State level committee on prevention of atrocities on SCs and STs set up under his chairmanship.

The meeting, which was to be held at least twice a year to review atrocity cases and the progress of investigation made by CRE Cell met today for the first time after the BJP government came to power.

Mr. Yeddyurappa, admitting the delay in convening the Committee meeting, said he would hereafter hold the sittings once in six months. He said currently the State has seven special courts to try cases of atrocities on SCs and STs and if need arises, the government was willing to establish more courts.

Mr. Yeddyurappa also directed officials to take stringent action against those who commit atrocities on Dalits.

As many as 632 cases of atrocities on these sections have been registered and 373 are still pending for disposal, he pointed out. Efforts should be made to check the menace of non-Dalits securing fake caste certificates to deny reservation benefits to Dalits, he said.

Mr. Yeddyurappa said allocation for SCs welfare which was Rs. 107 crore in 2005-06 has touched Rs. 403 crore in 2010-11. For STs the allocation has witnessed ten fold hike in 2010-11 touching Rs. 1344 crore as against a meagre Rs. 133 crore earmarked in 2005-06, he said.

Similarly allocation for Ambedkar Development Corporation which provides financial assistance to SCs and STs for various self-employment programmes has increased to Rs. 1405 crore in 2010-11 from Rs. 530 crore in 2005-06.

Ministers representing SCs and STs like Govind Karjol, C. Narayanaswamy, Balachandra Jarkiholi, Shivaraj Tangadagi, P.M. Narendraswamy attended the meeting.

Home Minister R. Ashok was also present.