Twenty years back on this day, tragedy descended on the people of Bhopal in the form of a deadly gas that eventually led to the death of more than 15,000 people.

Twenty years on from the ghastly incident, victims’ fight continues for a compensation that fail to measure up to the damage caused to them hy a huge margin (by the latest supreme court order, each victim will receive approx Rs 26,000). Twenty years is a long time. The proverb ‘Justice delayed is justice denied’ is stronger when it is denied to the poorest of the poor. Considering the propotions of the tragedy and the demography of the victims, this delay is a gross human rights violation from the part of govt of India.

How different would have the outcome of the tragedy been if our legal structure was different? How different would have the outcomes been if India Govt had not declared itself the sole representative of victims in US courts?

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The opinions expressed in this essay are those of the authors. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of CCS.