Over five lakh Bhopal gas disaster victims compensated: Govt

As many as 5,74,376 claimants of Bhopal gas disaster have been given compensation amounting to Rs 1,548 crore, the Lok Sabha was informed today.

Last Updated: Jul 30, 2010, 00:55 AM IST

New Delhi: As many as 5,74,376 claimants of
Bhopal gas disaster have been given compensation amounting to
Rs 1,548 crore, the Lok Sabha was informed today.

"After adjudication of their claims under various
categories, 5,74,376 claimants have originally been awarded
compensation amounting to Rs 1,548 crore till June 30,"
Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers Srikant Jena
said in a written reply.

The minister also said that till June 30, 2010, a total
of 5,62,648 claimants have received pro-rata compensation
amounting to Rs 1,509.89 crore, while the remaining 11,728 are
yet to come up to receive it.

In 2004, the Supreme Court had directed disbursal of
pro-rata compensation on 1:1 basis, which was disbursed from
2004 onwards.

"There are a total of 11,728 cases of claimants who have
not appeared before the Office of Welfare Commissioner for
receiving the pro-rata amount despite notices sent at
indicated addresses, circulation in media and adequate time
accorded," Jena said.

He further informed the Lower House that the Cabinet has
approved all the recommendations of the reconstituted Group of
Ministers (GoM) with the modification that "enhanced
compensation" recommended by the GoM will be paid as
"ex-gratia".

"The follow up action on various decisions of the Cabinet
has been initiated by the concerned departments of the Centre
as well as the Madhya Pradesh government in a time-bound
manner as approved by the government," Jena added.

Among other recommendations of the GoM, constituted
recently to examine all matters related to Bhopal gas
disaster, it has said that the Ministry for Chemicals and
Fertilisers may be directed to file appropriate applications
before the courts concerned, requesting them, especially the
MP High Court, to expeditiously decide on the question of
liability of Dow Chemicals Company.

Once this question is addressed, the various legal
proceedings involving Dow Chemicals and any other person or
company found liable can be taken forward, the GoM said.

-PTI