Chief Judicial Magistrate, Bhopal

The Bhopal gas leak disaster symbolises the failure of the legal system in general and the failure of the system to respond to the disaster in particular. The twenty years of engagement with the law and the justice system holds many lessons for the future. It is time for introspection and assessment.

Twenty years after the worst ever man-made disaster in the country, victims of the Bhopal gas tragedy got a direction from the Supreme Court for the disbursement of a Rs 1,567 crore compensation to them, paid by US pesticide major Union Carbide.

The Supreme Court's order to disburse among the Bhopal gas victims the unspent compensation amount remaining with the RBI presents an opportunity to reopen and correct the distortions in the 1989 settlement reached between Union Carbide Corporation and the Government of India.

Bhopal gets promised a long awaited Rsl,503 crore

For some, the figure of Rsl,503 crore may appear a bounty. But lakhs of people in Bhopal have been waiting anxiously for several years to get this money, and it's rightfully theirs for the taking. A Supreme Court diktat that would enable them to get the money had been eluding them.

Supreme Court order dated July 19 2004 directed the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to release Rs 1503 crore deposited with it by the company for disbursement to Bhopal gas tragedy victims.

The multi-disciplinary study of histopathology and toxicology of Bhopal gas tragedy resolved several issues. First, the progression of severe pulmonary oedema to chronic fibrosis was confirmed experimentally, following a single exposure to MIC. Analysis of the residue in Tank 610 revealed over 21 chemicals.

A petition filed by the Bhopal gas tragedy victims has prompted the Supreme Court to ask the Union government for an explanation. The discrepancy in the compensation amount due to the victims appears too huge to go unnoticed...

On the night of December 2, 1984, forty tons of deadly methyl isocyanate leaked out of a Union Carbide pesticide factory in Bhopal, India, killing thousands and injuring many more.

Twenty years ago around half a million people were exposed to toxic chemicals during a catastrophic gas leak from a pesticide plant in Bhopal, India. More than 7,000 people died within days. A further 15,000 died in the following years. Around 100,000 people are suffering chronic and debilitating illnesses for which treatment is largely ineffective.