Chandigarh, March 31 (IANS) Following a call for a shutdown on April 2 by various organizations of the Scheduled Caste community to show resentment against the dilution of SC/ST Atrocities Act, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Saturday appealed to the community and other people of the state to keep restraint and maintain law and order.
In a statement issued here on Saturday, he said that the Punjab government was seized with the situation arising out of the dilution of the Act. He said that the protest should be done in a peaceful manner and nothing should be done to endanger the peace and communal harmony in the state.
“The Chief Minister said that the Punjab Government was already committed for the welfare of Scheduled Castes, which was evident from the fact that the Punjab Vidhan Sabha unanimously adopted a resolution to express solidarity with our SC brethren during its recently concluded Budget Session seeking the NDA Government’s intervention to legally pursue the case in which a Supreme Court verdict had diluted provisions of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act,” a spokesperson for the Chief Minister said.
Amarinder Singh urged the SC community and different associations to maintain peace, harmony and amity during their protest.
Noting Punjab had the highest population of Scheduled Castes in the country, constituting nearly 32 percent of state’s population, he said that his government “accords the highest priority to ensure their all-round welfare and committed to safeguard their interests”.