Kerala Kaumudi Online
Thursday, 07 July 2022 7.12 PM IST

Show sympathy to victims of endosulfan tragedy


Families affected by the endosulfan tragedy are once again on the doorsteps of the secretariat seeking help and justice. The government should've had already opened its eyes to the benevolence of these people, whose situation is a sorrowful sight for everyone who sees them. There are people in this group who can't even move without help. At every stage of such struggles, the authorities used to send the victims back to Kasaragod after ensuring that the problem will be resolved. But as the years go by, the painful reality of many of the promises not being fulfilled is once again evident. The revelation that there are many victims among the affected who did not even receive the compensation ordered by the Supreme Court four years ago is a good example of how lightly the people concerned are dealing with humanitarian issues. According to a statement issued by the Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly on Wednesday, more than 3,700 people are yet to receive the court-ordered Rs 5 lakh. Not only compensation, but other things in the previous settlement agreement are still pending. The endosulfan victims, who are in a very sympathetic human condition, should not have been dragged from Kasaragod to Thiruvananthapuram once again. The Minister of Social Welfare outlined in the Assembly the good deeds already done by the Government for the victims. No one disputes that. But they must have gone to the secretariat in search of justice because there is still work to be done. The treasury will not have to be completely emptied to pay the remaining compensation as fixed by the Supreme Court. Similarly, if the government agrees, it will be able to implement the announced rehabilitation plan, medical facilities and other welfare schemes. If this catastrophe created by the pesticide company had happened anywhere else in any other civilized country, the government would have struggled to pay compensation. Many years have passed since the catastrophic endosulfan application to cashew plantations that left many sick for life. It extends to generations. It is the duty of the government to safeguard the lives of those families who are living with innumerable hardships. The committee set up to coordinate rehabilitation activities has not been functioning for months. The District Collector, who withheld it by pointing out that there were many ineligible persons in the list of those to be compensated, did not show sympathy to the victims. The list was prepared after three rounds of inspections.

Endosulfan victims are still only demanding what the government can easily do. Compromise should be reached as soon as possible without prolonging the tragic show in front of the secretariat.

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