Cabinet to discuss GoM report on Bhopal

The Cabinet will meet Thursday to discuss the GoM recommendations on the Bhopal tragedy.

Zeenews Bureau

New Delhi: The Union Cabinet will meet Thursday to discuss the recommendations of the Group of Ministers (GoM) on the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy.

The cabinet meet comes three days after the re-constituted GoM, headed by Union Home Minister Chidambaram, submitted its report to the Prime Minister with several suggestions related to compensation and proper rehabilitation of victims.

As per reports, the GoM has recommended cash compensation amounting to a total of about Rs 1,500 crore out of which Rs 10 lakh are for each family of the dead, Rs 5 lakh for completely disabled and Rs 3 lakh for partially disabled victims.

The government is keen on delivering the compensation amount by July 15, media reports claimed.

The GoM has also suggested that the Centre should file a curative petition against the 1996 Surpreme Court judgement, which is believed to have diluted criminal charges against Union Carbide.

Filing a curative petition means government will appeal for tougher punishment against the main accused in higher courts.

The GoM also pressed for initiating efforts towards the extradition of the then Union Carbide CEO Warren Anderson. Sources say government wants to complete that process by August 15.

On the cleaning up of the toxic waste, the GoM is said to be of the opinion that the Centre should give Rs 350 crore to the Madhya Pradesh government for the same.
Today’s cabinet meet coincides with a planned protest by Bhopal gas victims in New Delhi. The victims under the umbrella of organizations working for their cause are also expected to seek an appointment with the Prime Minister.

They, as per reports, are demanding clarification from the government regarding distribution of relief package.
The protestors have alleged that less than 10% of gas victims would only benefit from the enhanced relief package recommended by the GoM. They allege that the GoM’s damage assessment is faulty and is only meant to reduce the liabilities for Union Carbide Corporation.

The victims have also criticised the GoM for failing to make any recommendations regarding review of death claims or registration of exposure related death claims that was arbitrarily stopped in 1997.

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