GoM on Bhopal gas tragedy to meet on Monday

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New Delhi, Sep 26 (ANI): The Group of Ministers panel on 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy will meet here on Monday to assess the progress made since the GoM handed over its recommendations to the Union Cabinet three months ago.

According to sources, the panel headed by Home Minister P Chidambaram will review the progress made by various ministries since June.

In June, the Union Cabinet had accepted all the 22 recommendations of the GoM and decided to push for extradition of former Union Carbide chief Warren Anderson and ascertain the liability of Dow Chemicals besides announcing a Rs 1265.56 crore package for relief and remediation.

The CBI had on August 2 filed a curative petition in the Supreme Court seeking restoration of stringent charge of culpable homicide not amounting to murder against the accused in the 1984 Bhopal Gas tragedy case.

The GoM constituted to examine all aspects of the Bhopal gas disaster, seeking Anderson's extradition apart from measures to clean up the disaster site, had submitted the report to Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh on June 21.

The GoM had dealt with all the issues - compensation, legal issues, including the issue of the extradition of Warren Anderson, the legal options available to the Government of India, and most importantly, remediation matters, and health related matters.

Union Carbide settled its liabilities to the Indian government in 1989 by paying 470 million dollars before being bought by another US company, Dow Chemical.

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 one of India's most horrific of industrial disasters. Rights activists, however, claim that 25,000 people have died so far. (ANI)

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