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Above: Members of Dalit organisations raising slogans during Bharat Bandh over SC/ST Act, in Lucknow on April 2/Photo: UNI 

As the Supreme Court bench of Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel and Uday Umesh Lalit started hearing the petitions related to the SC/ ST judgment, in which review has been filed, Attorney General K K Venugopal brought a few cases before the bench and in the end concluded that you cannot substitute the prevalent provision.

Justice AK Goel said that you must read article 21 in every provision after the Maneka Gandhi judgment. Article 21 (Protection of life and personal liberty) cannot be denied.

Arrest without due procedure is a violation of article 21.

The AG said that the bench has interpreted the provisions tremendously.

The AG said that right to life is not an animal existence but it is a right to live food, shelter, job etc. But they are not implemented at all. This is applicable when will you give a job and when you hold it. Millions of people are jobless hence their right to job is not recognized.

The bench said that that remains a goal.

Justice Lalit said that first this court recognized the right to education under article 21. Only then did Parliament make it a law.

The AG said: “There are many judgments of my lords in this matter. This bench has overruled two important judgments in this case.”

Justice Lalit said that these lines of cases are on some other grounds.

The AG said the problem really is that there cannot be substitution or change. The bench must fill the gap which is there.

Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and senior advocate Indira Jaisingh also made submissions before the bench.

The matter is now listed for July.

—India Legal Bureau

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