Bhopal: Panel to Decide on Waste Disposal Sought
The Madhya Pradesh government today suggested composition of a sub-committee to decide on safe disposal of 346 tonnes of toxic waste from the Bhopal gas disaster site.

During a meeting of Group of Ministers (GoM) here, MP Gas Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Babulal Gaur said the waste samples are also being examined by a Gurgaon-based firm to ascertain the level of toxic and other harmful material, if any, in it.

During the meeting, which came a month after a German firm refused to remove the waste from Bhopal, Gaur said a sub-committee should be formed to find out possibility of treating waste in one of the 22 treatment facilities across the country, a Madhya Pradesh government statement said.

However, officials said, no decision on constituting a sub-panel was taken during the meet.

Gaur said the state government will put its point of view in this regard before the Supreme Court, which had in August asked both the Centre and Madhya Pradesh government to dispose the waste within six months.

Germany's GIZ IS refused to remove the toxic waste after negotiations between the Centre and the company had collapsed following an uproar from the civil society in Germany.

The firm had also written a letter to Finance Minister P Chidambaram, who heads the GoM, to inform him about its decision.

About 346 MT toxic waste is lying within the premises of the erstwhile Union Carbide India Ltd at Bhopal. The worst-ever industrial disaster had taken place at the Union Carbide plant on the intervening night of December 2-3, 1984.

According to government data, over Rs 3,000 crore has been given as compensation in 5,295 cases of death, 4,902 cases of permanent disability, 5,27,894 cases of minor injury and 35,455 cases related to temporary disability due to the tragedy among others.

Other members of the GoM who attended the meeting included Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, Environment Minister Jayanthi Natarajan, Law Minister Salman Khurshid and Human Resources Development Minister Kapil Sibal.
Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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