[Polity] Constitutional Provisions for Scheduled Tribes (rights issue for CSAT)Devendra Vishwakarma
Topic is important for CSAT Paper I (rights issue) and for GS (Mains) Paper I (Polity).
- Article 15(4): Promotion of Social, Economic and Educational interests
- Article 19(5): Safeguard of Tribal Interests
- Article 23: Human Trafficking
- Article 29: Cultural and Educational Rights
- Article 164
- Articles 330, 332 and 334
- Article 335
- Article 338
- Article 339(1)
- Article 371(A, B, C)
Constitutional Provisions / Safeguards for Scheduled Tribes, can be divided into two parts
( you read the following provisions and classify them into above segments by yourself)
Article 15(4): Promotion of Social, Economic and Educational interests
- This article empowers “the state to make any special provision for the advancement of socially and educationally backward classes of citizens or for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes”.
- This clause has been especially incorporated to prevent any special provision made by a state for the advancement of socially or educationally backward classes of citizens from being challenged in the law courts on the ground of discrimination.
Article 19(5): Safeguard of Tribal Interests
- While the rights of free movement and residence throughout the territory of India and of acquisition and disposition of property are guaranteed to every citizen, special restrictions may be imposed by “the state for the protection of the interests of any Scheduled Tribe “.
- (For example state may impose restrictions on owning property by non tribals in tribal areas.)
Article 23: Human Trafficking
‘Traffic in human beings, begar and other similar forms of forced labour are prohibited”. This is a very significant provision so far as Scheduled Tribes are concerned.
Article 29: Cultural and Educational Rights
According to this article a cultural or linguistic minority has right to conserve its language or culture. ‘The state shall not impose upon it any culture other than the community’s own culture.”
- It provides for a Minister-in-charge of tribal welfare in the states of MP, Chattisgarh,Orissa and Jharkhand.*
- These states have substantial tribal population and special provision of a Minister looking after tribal welfare is an evidence of the concern of the framers of the constitution for safeguarding the interests of Scheduled Tribes.
*Correction by our good friend Syed Waseem Pasha
Earlier it was mp, orissa amd bihar (MOB) but the new list is mp, chattisgarh(after 2000), orissa & jharkhand(after 2000) bihar removed
Articles 330, 332 and 334
- According to these articles seats shall be reserved for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in legislative bodies. There are provisions for reservations of seats in the parliament as well as legislative Assembly of every state (Article 330,332).
- Such reservations were cease to be effective after a period of 10 years from the commencement of the constitution (Article 334) but after every ten years its being extended through constitutional amendments.
- The claims of the members of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes shall be taken into consideration in making the appointments to services and posts in connection with the affairs of the Union or of a State.
- It says that there shall be a special officer for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to be appointed by the President.
- National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, has been established under 338A.
- The President may at any time and shall at the expiration of 10 years from the commencement of the constitution by order appoint a Commission to report on the administration of Scheduled areas and the welfare of the Scheduled Tribes in the states.
Article 371(A, B, C)
- Provides for the special measures and provisions with respect to the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat (371), Nagaland (371 A), Assam (371 B) , and Manipur (371 C).
- Besides, provisions are also made in the fifth and the sixth Schedule of the constitution regarding the administration of the tribal areas. [5th and 6th Schedules are lucidly explained in M.Laxmikanth’s Book on Indian Polity]
All my articles on Polity can be accessed using: Mrunal.org/polity
Ref: This article on Tribal rights has been taken from IGNOU Tourism course, chapter 28.