Family of tree-fall victim still awaits compensation
More than two months after Rakeshkumar Gupta, 30, an autorickshaw driver, died after an unattended coconut tree fell on him in Vile Parle, his wife, Radha Gupta, 21, and children are still awaiting a compensation from the civic body.mumbai Updated: Sep 27, 2012 00:51 IST
More than two months after Rakeshkumar Gupta, 30, an autorickshaw driver, died after an unattended coconut tree fell on him in Vile Parle, his wife, Radha Gupta, 21, and children are still awaiting a compensation from the civic body.
Radha, who recently delivered her second child, was seven months pregnant at the time of the incident.
“My elder son is barely a year old. With the newborn in the house, we have so many additional expenses to meet,” said Bachchalal Gupta, Radha's father, who works as a driver. “We submitted the requisite documents in the first week of August, but have not yet received any notification from the officials,” he said. The family also submitted a letter to the civic chief Sitaram Kunte last week, asking him to intervene in the matter to speed up the compensation process.
According to the compensation policy of the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), which is responsible for timely pruning and cutting of dangerous trees in the city, Rs1 lakh is offered to the family of the deceased victim of the tree fall, and a maximum of Rs50, 000 is offered in case of grievous injuries.
From 2010, Hindustan Times has been running a campaign on how outdated tree-pruning mechanisms and civic negligence have endangered citizens' lives. Following a series of reports, the civic body formed a policy on the issue and upgraded the machinery used for maintaining trees.
“We haven't verified the documents as yet. As the compensation procedure is long-drawn, we have to call for a meeting with the committee set up to discuss the compensation procedures,” said Kamlashankar Yadav, superintendent of gardens. “As of now, we haven't even verified the files. It could take us some more time and we will prepare a preliminary report based on the documents,” he added.
“He was the only earning member of our family. We are in dire need of the compensation amount,” Radha said.