The family members of 2005 serial blast victim Michael John are fighting an endless battle.
It has been over 11 years and the family of Michael, who worked as a driver at the embassy of Russian Federation in New Delhi, has not been paid terminal benefits.
John’s daughter Manisha, 19, who lives in Dilshad Garden, has written a letter to the Ministry of External Affairs seeking intervention in the matter.
Manisha told HT, “We have sought permission from the ministry to go to court against the embassy as embassies enjoy diplomatic impunity.”
The family members wrote a letter to the embassy in 2011 and a letter to the National Human Rights Commission in 2016 but got no response.
In the 2005 blast, John, then 45, his wife Babli, 40, and their son Alvin 18 lost their lives. While Babli and Alvin’s bodies were recovered, Micheal was declared missing because the impact of the blast was so severe that his body was mutilated beyond recognition.
John was the only earning member in the family and Manisha has been living with her grandparents since his death.
The 2005 Sarojini Nagar blast was so strong that the bodies of 11 people could not be identified. Identities of five bodies could be established with the help of DNA test while the rest remained unidentified.
It took several years for five such families to get compensation. Michael’s family fought a legal battle for 10 years to get compensation. A Delhi court in 2015 ordered the government to pay them Rs 4 lakh along with interest that amounted to Rs 8,63,067.
Manisha was eight years old at the time of the blast. She is pursuing a course in hotel management from a college in Ghaziabad.
President of Sarojini Nagar mini-market association, who has been fighting several legal battles, for Sarojini Nagar blast victims said, “Michael has not been paid gratuity and other terminal benefits. We do not know the exact amount but it would be in lakhs.”