Case against Anderson not closed: Moily

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New Delhi, June 8 (ANI): Union Law and Justice Minister M Veerappa Moily on Tuesday said the case against Union Carbide chief Warren Anderson in connection with the Bhopal Gas Tragedy was not closed.

"As far as Anderson is concerned, the case is not closed. The CBI has filed charge sheet. There is one person here, who has not responded to the summons or replied to the charges. He has absconded and was declared a proclaimed offender," said Moily.

Earlier on Monday evening, Moily said the Government of India has made all possible efforts to bring him to justice, but the United States had not cooperated.

"We did our best but what can we do. The other country has also to cooperate," said Moily.

Anderson was the top executive of US-based Union Carbide Corporation (UCC) in 1984, when the world's worst industrial disaster swept out over Bhopal in a gas leak from a pesticide plant owned by Union Carbide.

Anderson was arrested after the gas leak, but was then inexplicably allowed to leave India five days later on December 7, 1984. Since then, he has ignored repeated court summons.

The United States has, however, expressed the hope that the Bhopal gas tragedy verdict would not hamper growing ties with India.

Reacting to the Bhopal gas verdict, US Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, Robert Blake said: "I don't expect this verdict to reopen any new inquiries or anything like that. 'On the contrary, we hope that this is going to help to bring closure."

On Monday, a District Magistrate's Court in Bhopal convicted all eight accused on of negligence under Section 304 (a) for the tragedy.

The court also granted bail to seven of the eight accused and released them on submission of a bond and a surety of Rs 25,000 each.

The eight accused are Keshub Mahendra, Vijay Gokhle, Kishore Kamdar, J Mukund, S P Choudhary, K V Shetty and S I Qureshi and R B Roy Choudhary.

Out of the accused R B Roy Choudhary, then former Assistant Works Manager Union Carbide India Ltd (UCIL), Mumbai, died during the trial. Warren Andreson, the chairman of Union Carbide Worldwide, has been designated as absconder.

The FIR in the tragedy was filed on December 3, 1984 and the case was transferred to Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on December 6, 1984. The CBI filed the charge sheet after investigation on December 1, 1987.

In the early hours of December 3, 1984, around 40 metric tonnes of toxic methyl isocyanate (MIC) gas leaked into the atmosphere and was carried by wind to surrounding slums.

The government says around 3,500 died in the disaster. Rights activists, however, claim that 25,000 people have died so far. (ANI)

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