BMC to compensate all victims of civic negligence | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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BMC to compensate all victims of civic negligence

The municipal body has begun drafting a new policy that will entitle Mumbaiites to compensation in case of any civic negligence, including being injured by an untrimmed tree branch.

mumbai Updated: Sep 07, 2010 02:25 IST
Kunal Purohit

The municipal body has begun drafting a new policy that will entitle Mumbaiites to compensation in case of any civic negligence, including being injured by an untrimmed tree branch.

This is the first time a policy of this kind is being put into place, which acknowledges citizens' rights.

The policy started taking shape after a series of reports in Hindustan Times about the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation's (BMC) inefficient tree-pruning policy and negligence, which has killed one person and seriously injured two others in the city.

HT had also highlighted the lack of a civic compensation policy for such victims.

"Our officials have begun drafting a policy that will cover the compensation of any victim who dies due to any civic accident. Currently, we have no policy so compensating these victims has been delayed," said Aseem Gupta, additional municipal commissioner.

The announcement comes on the day Union Petroleum Minister Murli Deora visited the home of Aslam Sheikh (45), a security guard with Bharat Petroleum, who was crushed to death by an untrimmed banyan tree branch, and announced a compensation package of Rs 50 lakh, in addition to a monthly pension of Rs 5,000.

Two other Mumbaiites — Antara Telang (18) in Sion and Tamanna Bhojani (30) in Kandivli — have suffered grievous injuries because of untrimmed tree branches and are still awaiting compensation.

While Antara has lost her leg, Tamanna has suffered spine injuries and is bedridden.

The new compensation policy, Gupta said, would be on the lines of the BEST's compensation policy for accident victims.

"The drafting will be over in a week's time after which the policy will have to be approved by the BMC chief and the corporation too. We are hurrying up so that compensation can be granted in all three cases at the earliest," he said.

Criticising the BMC for inaction, Deora said: "It's shocking that the BMC, which is responsible for this incident, has still not bothered to compensate the victim's family. I will speak to the BMC chief and tell him to look into it at the earliest."

Congress corporator Vinod Shekhar who was with Deora said: "We will take up the issue in the civic body tomorrow [on Tuesday] and ask the commissioner to fix criminal liability on officials responsible for such accidents."