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Interview with Salman Khurshid

As the Madhya Pradesh government decides to file an appeal against the "disappointing" verdict in the Bhopal gas tragedy case and Congress demands Andersson’s extradition Ambreen Zaidi raises the issue of corporate ethics with Salman Khurshid, Minister of minister for Corporate Affairs & Minority Affairs.

Q1- After 26 years and a defunct verdict is there still some hope for the victims?
The loss and pain cannot be compensated yet we have to do the utmost. The govt is leaving no stone unturned to help out the affected faamilies. Fortunately committed social workers and dedicated activists have not permitted the anguish to be overwhelmed by other pressing concerns.

Q2-Legally, an appeal can be made to a higher court, but what if its again as disappointing?
In being critical of the outcome we cannot unreasonably and irresponsibly question our courts including the Supreme Court. Laws cannot be altered by a court if the result is troublesome. Everyone knows that hard cases make bad law and vice versa.

Q3- Victims blame the utterly flawed legal framework what do tou have to say about it? Do we need to change legal system?
The legal system has also tried to adjust itself to these unprecedented challenges. The tort law has certainly developed but perhaps there is still a gap where man made large scale disasters are concerned. The Law Minister has already spoken of his intention to look a fresh at civil and criminal liability for such incidents.

Q4- Can the central govt give the victims some justice on its part?
I believe closure lies in rehabilitation not in vengence and retribution.The Govt knows what to do but hopes that other stake holders will also willingly contribute instead of simply complaining. It’s the time for all of us to get together and work towards better justice.

Q5- There has been a big question mark on India’s corporate ethics, after the verdict which has set an example how outsiders can escaped any criminal liability?
The law of course will apply equally to all, irrespective of their nationality. But we cannot legislate for the whole world, though we can be tough in multilateral negotiations. We are definetly working in that direction. Bhopal gas tragedy will always remain a cruel reminder of how humanity treats itself in search of comfort and money.

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About The Author

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Ambreen Zaidi

Politician

Delhi ,  INDIA

He is Union Minister of State (Independent Charge), Corporate Affairs Minority Affairs, Educationist, social reformer and politician.Congress Chief, Uttar Pradesh.Former Minister of State for Commerce. Grandson of Dr. Zakir Hussain, President of India, and son of Khursheed Alam Khan, former Governor of Karnataka. A product of DPS, St. Stephen's and Oxford, he is an eminent lawyer of the Supreme court of India and orator.He is also a prolific author and some of his eminent publications include - 'At Home in India', 'If Winter Comes', 'Beyond Terrorism'.Former President of the DPS Society. Married has two sons.

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