GoM asks MP Govt to release compensation to Bhopal gas victims

A high-powered committee asked the Madhya Pradesh government to release compensation to those victims of the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy who are yet to receive any money from the government.

Last Updated: Mar 25, 2011, 00:23 AM IST

New Delhi: A high-powered committee today
asked the Madhya Pradesh government to release compensation to
those victims of the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy who are yet to
receive any money from the government.

The Group of Ministers (GoM) on the Bhopal gas disaster,
chaired by Home Minister P Chidambaram, also gave its
in-principle approval for construction of a memorial at the
disaster site if no toxic material is found there.

"The GoM asked Madhya Pradesh government to release
compensation by June to those victims who are yet to receive
any money," Madhya Pradesh Minister for Relief and
Rehabilitation Babulal Gaur told reporters after the GoM
meeting.

The Centre has already given Rs 200 crore as compensation
to the victims. It has also moved to the Supreme Court seeking
enhancment of compensation from Rs 750 crore to Rs 7,700 crore
for the victims of the tragedy in which more than 5000 people
were killed due to leakage of poisonous gas from the Union
Carbide factory.

He said the GoM has given its in-principle approval to
the state government`s plea to construct a memorial at the
site. However, he said, a team of the Ministry of Environment
would have to give a clearance after examination that there
was no toxic material there.

"We have been asked to submit a detailed plan about the
memorial," Gaur said.

Gaur said the GoM also asked the state government to
submit a plan for purchase of medicine and medical equipment
for the Bhopal memorial hospital.

Sources said though the issue of extradition of the then
chief of Union Carbide Warren Anderson figured in the meeting,
no decision has been taken as the matter was sub judice.

A Delhi court yesterday allowed the CBI`s plea for
extradition of former Union Carbide Corporation chairman
Warren M Anderson, an accused in the 1984 Bhopal Gas Tragedy
case, from the United States, saying that "sentiments of the
disaster-hit people" is linked to it.

PTI