A Rs 1,500 crore package for enhancing compensation for the kin of those who died and those debilitated in the Bhopal gas disaster was today finalised by a Group of Ministers (GoM).
The GoM, headed by Home Minister P Chidambaram, that went into a whole range of issues, including relief and rehabilitation of the victims, is believed to have recommended payment of Rs 10 lakh to the next of kin of the dead in the world's worst industrial disaster nearly 26 years ago.
Those permanently disabled or suffering from critical ailments arising out of the deadly methyl isocyanate gas leak are likely to get Rs five lakh while those partially debilitated will get Rs three lakh.
These are among the recommendations of the GoM made to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in a report that will be considered by the Union Cabinet at a special meeting on Friday.
Chidambaram told reporters after the final meeting of the GoM that the Ministers have made "significant recommendations" and their immediate focus was "to bring relief to those people who had suffered as a result of the ghastly tragedy".
Sources said among the major recommendations of the group are a fresh attempt to be made for extradition of former CEO of Union Carbide Warren Anderson and filing of a curative petition in the Supreme Court against dilution of charges against the accused in the case.
The group is also believed to have cleared a proposal for clean up of the toxic site at the plant in Bhopal for burying the poisonous materials there itself. The job will be done by the Madhya Pradesh government in which the Central government will provide financial and technical assistance.
A sum of Rs 300 crore will be set apart for the clean up job, the sources said.
The GoM is also believed to have favoured the take over of Bhopal Memorial Trust hospital, set up in the aftermath of the tragedy, for whose upgradation Rs 230 crore will be spent.
Altogether 5,295 people lost their lives immediately after the gas disaster while 10,047 others succumbed to various diseases in the following months.
Out of the 5,60,000 affected people, nearly 37,000 were permanently disabled while the rest received minor injuries.