Bhopal gas tragedy: SC dismisses Centre's plea seeking additional compensation of Rs 7.4K crore

by IANS |

New Delhi, March 14 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to entertain a curative petition filed by the Centre demanding an additional compensation of Rs 7,400 crore from the successor firms of Union Carbide Corporation (UCC) for the victims of 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy.

A five-judge bench headed by Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul said the Centre's plea is not maintainable in law and it also lacked merits on the facts of this case.

The bench said the Centre's claim for a top up on compensation for the Bhopal gas tragedy victims has no foundation and added that either settlement is valid or set aside where it is vitiated by fraud.

"No such fraud has been impleaded by the Union of India and their only contention relates to number of victims and injuries...," noted the bench, dismissing the Centre's plea.

The bench added that the responsibility was on the Union of India to make good the deficiency in the compensation and the failure to take insurance policies is gross negligence on the part of the Centre. Detailed judgment in the matter will be uploaded later in the day.

On January 12, the top court had reserved its verdict on the Centre's curative petition seeking an additional Rs 7,400 crore from the successor firms of UCC for extending greater compensation to the victims.

During the hearing, the successor firms of the UCC had told the Supreme Court that the Indian government never suggested at the time of settlement (of 1989) that it was inadequate. The firm's counsel emphasized that depreciation of the rupee since 1989, cannot become a ground to seek a top-up of compensation now for the Bhopal gas tragedy victims.

Senior advocate Harish Salve, representing successor firms of the UCC, submitted before a bench -- also comprising Justices Sanjiv Khanna, Abhay S. Oka, Vikram Nath, and J.K. Maheshwari -- that there are affidavits starting from 1995 and ending as late as 2011, where the Indian government has opposed every single attempt to suggest that the settlement is inadequate.

The top court had grilled the Attorney General R. Venkataramani, representing the Centre, on how the government could file a curative petition without filing the review. It told the AG that the central government was not prohibited from granting relief to the Bhopal gas tragedy victims, and it cannot absolve itself from the welfare state principle saying, "I will take it from them (successor firms of Union Carbide Corporation), as and when taken from them, I will pay..."

Latest News
One killed in Texas wildfire Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:46 PM
Cabinet approves royalty rates for 12 critical minerals Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:45 PM
UP to have fire stations at tehsil level: Yogi Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:44 PM
India's leopard population rises to 13,874: report Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:43 PM
4.9-magnitude quake jolts Japan Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:23 PM
Cabinet approves chip fab plant by Tata Group & Taiwan's PSMC in Gujarat Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:16 PM
Pro-Pak slogan case: Seven interrogated & statements recorded, says Ktaka CM Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:15 PM
SC reverses 2018 ruling regarding automatic vacation of stay orders Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:14 PM
Scientists finds more evidence on Covid's effect on cognition, memory Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:14 PM
India-Mauritius relationship example of SAGAR goodwill: S. Jaishankar Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 04:11 PM
Sports ministry tells NSFs to issue certificates to athletes only through DigiLocker for greater transparency Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 03:59 PM
KL Rahul ruled out of Dharamshala Test; Bumrah returns: BCCI Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 03:55 PM
India received Rs 2.5 lakh crore worth investment proposals in chip sector: Centre Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 03:48 PM
With Rs 50,000 crore investment, UP's real estate sector set for a boom Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 03:46 PM
2010 Silda camp attack: 10 convicted Maoists sentenced to life imprisonment Thu, Feb 29, 2024, 03:46 PM