Bhopal gas tragedy: SC rejects Centre’s plea for enhanced compensation for victims from Union Carbide Corporation | India News


NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected the Centre’s curative plea for enhanced compensation of over Rs 7,000 crore for the victims of 1984 Bhopal Gas tragedy from US-based firm Union Carbide Corporation (UCC), now owned by Dow Chemicals. Over 3,000 people lost their lives in the tragedy, which also caused massive environmental damage.

Dismissing the curative petition to reopen the case to top up the compensation amount, a five-judge constitution bench said it disapproves the Centre’s decision to rake up the issue after two decades.
“We are unsatisfied with the Union of India for not furnishing any rationale for raking up this issue after two decades … We are of the view that curative petitions cannot be entertained,” the bench, headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul, said.

“Centre itself stated earlier that the amount paid by Union Carbide Corporation was sufficient to settle all the claims of victims and there was no merit in Centre’s plea as Rs 50 crore of the amount still remain unutilised,” the apex court said.
The bench, also comprising Justices Sanjiv Khanna, Abhay S Oka, Vikram Nath and JK Maheshwar, had on January 12 reserved its verdict on the Centre’s curative plea.

On January 12, the successor firms of UCC told the top court that the depreciation of the rupee since 1989, when a settlement was arrived at between the company and the Centre, cannot be a ground to now seek a ‘top-up’ of compensation for the victims of the Bhopal gas tragedy.
The Centre wanted another Rs 7,844 crore from the UCC’s successor firms over and above the $470 million (Rs 715 crore) it got from the American company as part of the settlement in 1989.
-With agency inputs


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