On The Bhopal gas Tragedy ,where over 15,000 people were killed and several thousands maimed to the leak of deadly methyl isocyanate (MIC) gas in December, 1984 the Supreme Court of India pronounced its judgement that” the 1996 verdict was not “binding” on the trial court which failed to appreciate the correct legal provision for trying the accused under the stringent provision in the tragedy that killed over 15,000 people and maimed several thousands to the leak of deadly methyl isocyanate (MIC) gas in December, 1984″.
The people who survived the disaster are still suffering from the after effects.
True , the CBI is at fault for diluting the charges.
However the Court had ” left it open to the Sessions Court there to consider restoring stringent charges against the accused, who had got punishment under lighter provisions”.
The Court knows the enormity of the Tragedy and the injustice meted out to the affected for no fault of theirs, by the CBI to cater to the need of the of the vested interests.
Throwing the ball back to the CBI is meaningless.
Judiciary is perceived to be last refuge of the Common man in India to-day, not withstanding Dinakarans and PF Fraudsters.
After all the Judiciary is a part of the society where people’s grievances are to be met.
Taking umbrage under’ material available at the time of th trial’,'it is years old’ is fine.
But it does not reflect the spirit of the Law,especially in this case.
The Court knows, apart from wanton inefficiency of the CBI , the time it could take to deliver the judgement.
Even if one were to appoint a Special Commission, there are appeals galore, when the affected and the perpetrators will be no more.
It becomes a travesty of Justice.
Instead the Court could have directed the CBI to file a fresh case, indicating provisions to be charged with and monitor the progress of the case.
It has tken a commendable action in 2 G scam
Why not in this case?
If this is a violation of Law and Constitution, be it.
This is the tragedy.
Holding that the 1996 judgement that diluted charges against the accused was “not binding”, the apex court dismissed a curative petition filed by the CBI saying it was based on a “wrong and fallacious plea” and filed after a lapse of 14 years.
”In our view, on the basis of the material on record, it is wrong to assume that the 1996 judgement is a fetter against proper exercise of powers by a court of competent jurisdiction under the relevant provisions of the Code,” a five-judge Constitution Bench headed by Chief Justice S H Kapadia said.
On 7 June 2010 seven former employees of the Union Carbide subsidiary, all Indian nationals and many in their 70s, were convicted of causing death by negligence and each sentenced to two years imprisonment and fined Rs.1 lakh (US$2,124; €1,776). All were released on bail shortly after the verdict.
- Medical staff were unprepared for the thousands of casualties.
- Doctors and hospitals were not informed of proper treatment methods for MIC gas inhalation. They were told to simply give cough medicine and eye drops to their patients.
- The gases immediately caused visible damage to the trees. Within a few days, all the leaves fell off.
- 2,000 bloated animal carcasses had to be disposed of.
- “Operation Faith”: On December 16, the tanks 611 and 619 were emptied of the remaining MIC. This led to a second mass evacuation from Bhopal.
- Complaints of a lack of information or misinformation were widespread. The Bhopal plant medical doctor did not have proper information about the properties of the gases. An Indian Government spokesman said that “Carbide is more interested in getting information from us than in helping our relief work.”
- As of 2008, UCC had not released information about the possible composition of the cloud.
- Formal statements were issued that air, water, vegetation and foodstuffs were safe within the city. At the same time, people were informed that poultry was unaffected, but were warned not to consume fish.