Ques. “The National Commission for Scheduled Castes is not an adjudicatory body and its reports, which are recommendatory in nature, cannot be equated with the civil court’s decrees or orders”, while critically analysing the given statement describe the role of National Commission for Scheduled Castes as well as limitation to its powers and mandate.
National Commission for Scheduled Castes is an Indian constitutional body established with a view to provide safeguards against the exploitation of Scheduled Castes and to promote and protect their social, educational, economic and cultural interests, special provisions were made in the Constitution.
Constitution of India under Article 338 has assigned the following duties and functions to the Commission:
- To investigate and monitor all matters relating to the safeguards provided for the Scheduled Castes under this Constitution or under any other law for the time being in force or under any order of the Government and to evaluate the working of such safeguards.
- To inquire into specific complaints with respect to the deprivation of rights and safeguards of the Scheduled Castes.
- To participate and advise on the planning process of socio-economic development of the Scheduled Castes and to evaluate the progress of their development under the Union and any State;
- To present to the President, annually and at such other times as the Commission may deem fit, reports upon the working of those safeguards.
- To make in such reports recommendations as to the measures that should be taken by the Union or any State for the effective implementation of those safeguards and other measures for the protection, welfare and socio-economic development of the Scheduled Castes.
- To discharge such other functions in relation to the protection, welfare and development and advancement of the Scheduled Castes as the President may, subject to the provisions of any law made by Parliament, by rule specify.
The National Commission for SC, not being an adjudicatory body, has certain limitations:
- The Commission, established under Article 338 of the Constitution, could not issue binding directions or injunction orders and its reports, unlike the decrees of civil courts, could not be enforced and executed.
- As the commission is not an adjudicatory body that could issue binding directions or injunction order therefore it has no jurisdiction over service matters of an institution like the ITBP.
- Commission’s reports are not an alternative to the hierarchical judicial system envisaged under the constitution.
National Commission for Scheduled Castes is committed to the full implementation of the various acts like the PCR Act, 1955 and SC and ST (POA) Act, 1989. The NCSC endeavors to ensure that the economic development schemes for SC population are implemented as per guidelines and every penny of SCP/SCSP is spent appropriately exclusively for the benefit of Scheduled Castes. It also endeavors to ensure that reservations implemented at every level, strictly as per government rules and regulations.