In response to a media report that 11 people including three minors had died because of leakage of Hydrogen sulphide, the Tribunal took the case on its initiative. 2 lakh rupee compensation to the deceased’s family members had been declared by the State government.
Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel and Sudhir Agarwal’s National Green Tribunal panel ordered the district magistrate of Ludhiana to pay each of the 11 people’s surviving family members 20 lacks following the April 30 gas leak event in the Giaspur neighbourhood of Ludhiana. Expert member Prof. A Senthil Veil recalled that in the recent past, victims were typically entitled to compensation at the rate of 20 lakhs in cases of death in situations of injury or death due to State and private entity violations of environmental law.
Recommendation and Suggestion
The bench referred to recent instances of deaths and injuries caused by State and private entities violating environmental regulations, and it held that in such cases, victims are typically entitled to compensation at the rate of Rs. 20 lakhs in cases of death and at varying rates in cases of injuries depending on the severity of the injuries. The NGT stated that if there are no recognised private operators, the State must provide compensation with the option to recover it from those who are proven to be at fault. It also stated that compensation must be paid within a month.
The Punjab State Pollution Control Board’s (PCB) chairman will serve as the chairman of the eight-member joint committee charged with gathering facts about the incident which cause the death of 11 people. Additional committee members include the Regional Director (North), Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), Industrial Toxicology Research Centre (ITRC), Lucknow, a nominee of the director of PGI Chandigarh, a nominee of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), State PCB, District Magistrate, Ludhiana, and Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Ludhiana.
The NGT tribunal directed the Ludhiana DM to ensure the payment of compensation to all deceased families within a month.