A Division Bench of the Kerala High Court disposed of a writ petition seeking to enhance compensation announced for those who have lost their lives and property in the Pettimudy landslip in Munnar, observing that the State government had taken appropriate steps to mitigate the hardships of the families of the landslide victims.
In her petition, Gomathi Augustin, founding leader of Pembilai Otrumai, a trade union movement for women, sought to provide compensation to the victims of the families on a par with the amount given to the victims of Karipur aircraft clash.
According to her, the government had announced ₹5 lakh as compensation to Pettimudy victims, whereas the victims of the air crash were given ₹10 lakh. Both tragedies occurred on the same day. The victims of the Karipur air crash would get a comparatively huge amount as insurance, whereas the families of landslip victims would get no other financial help, the petition contended.
The government submitted that ex gratia payment of ₹5 lakh had been sanctioned. The court observed that the contention of the petitioner that there was discrimination between the victims of Karipur aircraft crash and the victims of the Pettimudy landslide could not be countenanced.
The Bench further said that the ex gratia amount of ₹5 lakh should be given to the legal representatives of the deceased as soon as they produced the legal heirship certificate.