BHOPAL: National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has sought an Action Taken Report from the Centre and State governments on pension to widows of Bhopal tragedy gas victims. The government at the Centre and the state have been asked to submit their reports within four weeks.
The commission was hearing an appeal filed by the Bhopal Gas Peedith Mahila Udyog Sanghthan (BGPMUS) and the Bhopal Gas Peedith Sangharsh Sahayog Samiti (BGPSSS).
The NHRC on 05 Aug 2020 admitted the Appeal from BGPMUS and BGPSSS. Subsequently, on 07 Aug, the NHRC has sought an Action Taken Report from the secretary, Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, Government of India within four weeks. The NHRC’s notification dated 07 Aug states as follows.
“The complainant had stated that the Union Cabinet, on 24.06.2010, had approved recommendation of the Group of Ministers to provide pension to 5000 widows of gas victims. Initially, it was paid Rs. 500/- per month to each of the widow but this was increased to Rs. 1000/- per month by the Central Government, for which an amount of Rs. 30 crore was allocated. As such, the total amount Rs. 25.43 crore was disbursed as pension to 4995 beneficiaries till the year 2019-20, and an mount Rs. 4.57 crore is still lying with the Central Government.
However, now the hapless widow beneficiaries are being deprived from the pension. In addition, a Curative Petition filed by the Union of India for enhancing the settlement sum by an additional amount of Rs. 7728/- crores is still pending before the Supreme Court of India for last ten years. The complainant has requested payment of pension to the gas victim widows with arrears since the January, 2020 and pushing up the Curative Petition in the Supreme Court.