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Trial against Anderson in Bhopal case pending in US

January 05, 2011 15:43 IST

Judicial proceedings against Warren Anderson, proclaimed offender in the over two-decade old Bhopal gas leak case, are still pending in the United States.

"Since Warren Anderson was declared a proclaimed offender during trial, the trial against him, M/s Union Carbide Corporation, USA is still pending," the Central Bureau of Investigation said in response to an RTI query.

The investigating agency had re-registered the case initially filed by Hanumanganj police station, Bhopal on December 3, 1984 against J Mukund, K V Shetty, S P Choudhary, Yatin Raichoudhary and Shakil Abraham.

"The case resulted in the conviction of all accused who faced trial. The CBI has filed a curative petition in the Supreme Court with a prayer to frame the charges under Section 304 (punishment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder). A revision and appeal has also been filed in the sessions court of Bhopal to enhance punishment," the RTI reply by CBI said.

However, the details of correspondences between the ministry of external affairs, ministry of home affairs, department of personnel and the Madhya Pradesh government among others and the CBI were denied.

"Disclosure of this information will hamper the extradition proceedings regarding Warren Anderson which in turn will hamper the prosecution of accused," the public information officer said in reply to the RTI application filed by advocate Vivek Garg.

When asked about the details of the case, B R Lall, former joint director of the CBI and in-charge of the probe, repeated his allegation that he was "forced by the (then) ministry of external affairs officials not to follow the extradition of Anderson".

"The CBI investigation was influenced and commanded by some officials, as a result (of which) justice in the Bhopal gas leakage case got delayed, hence, denied," said Lall. HeĀ  was in charge of the investigation from April 1994 to July 1995.

The gas leak on the night of December 2, 1984 had killed more than 15,000 people.

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