The CBI on Monday filed a curative petition before the Supreme Court asking it restore the stringent charges of culpable homicide not amounting to murder against the accused in the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy case.
Settled by the Attorney General GE Vahanvati, the petition states it’s an “attempt to set right the gross miscarriage of justice” caused by a 1996 verdict that diluted the charges against seven persons, including former Union Carbide India Chairman Keshub Mahindra.
Advocate Devadatt Kamat, who drafted the petition for the CBI said, “There were inherent contradictions in the 1996 judgment and we have pointed those out in our plea.”
The CBI took a decision to file the petition after public outrage over the Bhopal special court verdict, convicting seven persons for the tragedy.
The court found the accused guilty for rash and negligence and sentenced them to two years jail term.
The CBI has claimed in its petition that categorical evidence has come up during the trial to show that the accused had committed a serious offence of mischief and culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
It said the accused had knowledge about the inherent defects in the plant despite which no action was taken. According to the agency there were commercial motives behind the deliberate acts of not rectifying the defects.
The plant, it alleged, was constantly making losses from 1981 to 1984 and, therefore, a decision was taken to close it and sell it. The defects were not corrected even though the as company’s officials had pointed them out.
It also quotes the operational safety survey report conducted by the Union Carbide Corporation authorities that was specifically sent to accused Warren Anderson and Keshub Mahindra.
The petition also talks about defects that were reported by a team of experts from US who ad visited Bhopal after the death of an employee, Ashraf, in 1982.