After more than two decades of a wild goose chase, the CBI can finally extradite former Union Carbide chairman Warren Anderson, main accused in the Bhopal gas tragedy case.
A Delhi court Wednesday allowed CBI’s plea to extradite Anderson to face trial in one of the world’s worst industrial disaster that took place on December 3, 1984 (see box).
The chief metropolitan magistrate Vinod Yadav sanctioning the extradition said, “I see no ground or reason for why the US authorities would not co-operate with CBI in extraditing him. Let extradition request to corresponding US authorities be sent through appropriate ministry for compliance ”.
The CBI told the court the Indian government had ratified an Extradition Treaty with US in 1999, which permits Anderson extradition to stand trial on charges of culpable homicide not amounting to murder.
The court noted investigating agency contention stating at present “the offences for which Anderson was chargesheeted fall in the category of extraordinary offences, which are also offence under US laws and as such, the principle of Dual Criminality is also getting satisfied”.The court said, "Considering the entire gamut of facts in its holistic perspective and the sentiments of disaster hit people, I deem it expedient and in the interest of justice."
The CBI told the court that India had constituted S Varadaraja panel, which said, “After probing the matter in detail on the technical aspects, that there was defect in the design of plant at the factory premises of Union Carbide Corporation at Bhopal at the relevant time.”