National Commission for SCs Notes | EduRev

UPSC : National Commission for SCs Notes | EduRev

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Introduction

  • National Commission for Scheduled Castes is a Constitutional body as it is established by Article 338.
  • Originally, Art 338 provided for a Special Officer for SCs & STs who was designated as a Commissioner.
  • In 1978, Govt through a resolution estb a multi-member commission for SCs & STs. In 1987, the Govt passed a resolution to modify this Commission and renamed it as National Commission for SCs and STs.
  • The 65th Const Amd 1990 replaced the Special Officer for SCs & STs with the National Commission for SCs and STs.
  • The 89th Amd 2003, bifurcated the Commission into separate National Commission for SCs (Art 338) & National Commission for STs (338-A).
  • National Commission for SCs came into existence in 2004. It has a Chairperson, a Vice-Chairperson & 3 other members. They are appointed by President who also decides their Condition of service & tenure.

Functions of the Commission

  • To investigate & monitor all matters relating to Constitutional & other Safeguards for the SCs.
  • To inquire into specific complaints with respect to violation of rights & safeguards of the SCs.
  • To participate & advice on planning process of socio-economic development of the SCs & to evaluate their development at the Centre or States.
  • To present to the Prez reports annually or earlier, upon the working of the safeguards.
  • To make recommendations to the Union or a state as to the measures to be taken in order to ensure effective implementation of safeguards.
  • To discharge such other functions in relation to the protection & welfare of SCs as the Prez may specify.

Powers of the Commission

  • Commission is vested with power to regulate its own procedure.
  • The commission while investigating any matter or inquiring into any complaint will have powers equivalent to a civil court in following respects :
    ≫ Summoning & enforcing attendance of any person under oath.
    ≫ Requiring discovery & production of any document.
    ≫ Receiving evidence in affidavits.
    ≫ Requisitioning any public record from any court.
    ≫ Issuing summons for examination of witnesses & documents.
    ≫ Any other matter which the President may determine.
  • Central & State Govt are required to consult the commission on all major policy matters affecting SCs.
  • Commission is also required to discharge similar functions for OBCs & Anglo-Indian Community as it does for SCs.
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