Maharashtra to set up special courts for atrocity cases

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Mumbai, Feb 8 (PTI) Maharashtra Government would soon setup special courts in every division for speedy trial ofatrocity cases keeping in view the huge pendency, which hasjumped to over 5,000 and the low conviction rate.

A decision in this regard was taken yesterday by StateChief Minister Prithviraj Chavan in the backdrop of UnionSocial Justice and Empowerment Minister Mukul Wasnik''s visitto the state last week, to review the implementation of theScheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities)Act and Protection of Civil Rights Act.

Wasnik had expressed concern over the low conviction ratein the state and high number of pending cases.

"The proposal would be prepared by the state SocialJustice Department and send to the Bombay High Court to set upthe special courts in all seven divisional headquarters,"an official from the Home Department said.

The conviction rate in Atrocities Act cases inMaharashtra is three per cent, while the national convictionrate under the Act is 30 per cent, the official said.

Around 1,296 cases of atrocities were registered in thestate in 2009 of which 1,072 were against SCs and 224 againstSTs.

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