“As of date Rupees five lakh have been disbursed to only eight people who have approached the court. We fail to understand the rationale of the state government to disburse compensation only to those who have the resources to approach the court”, it said
The bench said that there are large numbers of victims who have not been paid the compensation despite the order passed five years ago.
“The victims are from marginalised sections of society and are in pitiable condition to whom compensation on an urgent basis has to be provided”, the bench said as it noted that there are over 3700 victims.
It noted that the state government had on January 15 decided to disburse an amount of Rs 200 crore for providing compensation to the victims of endosulfan.
Taking note of the compliance affidavit, the bench said that it states that there are 3704 victims of Endosulfan to whom compensation is to be given of which 102 victims are bedridden, 326 are mentally challenged and hundreds of them are suffering from cancer.
“What is the state government doing? If you cannot run a hospital for them then give it to someone else who can operate. These eight victims have moved the court and they have been given the compensation after the contempt petition has been filed. You don’t act unless a contempt petition is filed. Some of them have cancer, some are mentally challenged. Why can’t you do it yourself? Our judgement was five years back”, the bench said.
Justice Chandrachud said that they had exposure to the radioactive substance and the numbers of victims are bound to increase over the period and yet the state is forcing them to come to Delhi.
It said that the payment of the compensation has been made though belatedly to eight petitioners who have moved these proceedings.
“Cost of Rs 50,000 shall be paid over to each of the eight persons within a period of eight weeks of this order. The chief secretary shall hold monthly meetings to ensure that the judgement dated January 10, 2017, is diligently implemented by undertaking the process of -identifying the victim of endosulfan, ensuring the disbursement of compensation of Rs five lakh to each of the victims, taking steps for ensuring due medical facilities in terms of the earlier directions”, it said.
The bench said that an affidavit of compliance indicated the progress which has been made after the date of this order till the next date of listing in the third week of July.
The plea had sought initiation of contempt proceedings against the state government for wilful disobedience of the top court’s order dated January 10, 2017, and direction to set up a medical facility in Kasargod district to provide treatment to the victims.