Two yr jail for Bhopal gas case accused less: CBI

Two-year jail term to the convicts in Bhopal gas tragedy case is grossly disproportionate to the gravity of the crime committed which left more than 15,000 people dead, CBI told the Supreme Court.

Updated: Apr 19, 2011, 19:49 PM IST

New Delhi: Two-year jail term to the
convicts in Bhopal gas tragedy case is grossly
disproportionate to the gravity of the crime committed which
left more than 15,000 people dead, CBI on Tuesday told the Supreme
Court while seeking a review of its judgement of diluting
charges against the convicts.

"The judgement of September 13, 1996, is oppressive to
judicial conscience. It has caused manifest irremediable
injustice. A horrendous crime was committed and the maximum
punishment capable of being imposed under Section 304A (two
year jail term) are grossly disproportionate to each other,"
Attorney General G E Vahanvati told a five-judge constitution
bench headed by the Chief Justice S H Kapadia.
He further said although there was a mistake on the part
of investigating agency in approaching the court 16 years
after the order was passed but the court cannot deny justice
on this ground.

"It is a fundamental principle of criminal jurisprudence
that crime and punishment must be related to each other in
proportion to the gravity of the crime and its consequences.
It is in public interest that punishment be commensurate to
the gravity of the crime and its consequences," he said.
The bench was hearing a petition filed by CBI seeking
recall of the apex court`s 1996 judgement that had diluted the
charges against the accused who were prosecuted just for
the offence of being negligent.

PTI