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Forcing Citizens to Live in an Atmosphere of Communal Tension Affects Their Right to Life: SC

Last Updated: November 07, 2022, 16:26 IST

The Supreme Court ordered that the entire exercise of payment of compensation and/or interest shall be completed by the state government within a period of nine months. (PTI)

Referring to the 1992-93 Bombay riots, the court added that there was a failure on the part of the state government to maintain law and order and to protect the rights of the people guaranteed under Article 21

The Supreme Court, while issuing directions for payment of compensation to families of victims of the 1992-93 Bombay riots, observed that if citizens are forced to live in an atmosphere of communal tension, it affects their right to life guaranteed by Article 21.

“The violence witnessed by Mumbai in December 1992 and January 1993 adversely affected the right of the residents of the affected areas to lead dignified and meaningful life….”, held a bench of Justices SK Kaul, AS Oka and Vikram Nath.

The court added that there was a failure on the part of the state government to maintain law and order and to protect the rights of the people guaranteed under Article 21.

“As noted earlier, 900 persons died and more than 2,000 persons were injured. The houses, places of business and properties of the citizens were destroyed. These are all violations of their rights guaranteed under Article 21 of the Constitution of India,” the court said.

“The state government shall pay compensation of Rs 2 lakhs to the legal heirs of the missing persons traced out hereafter, with interest at the rate of 9% per annum from 22nd January 1999 i. e. from the expiry of the period of six months from the date of the second government resolution, till actual payment…”, it ordered.

Accordingly, it has been ordered that the entire exercise of payment of compensation and/or interest shall be completed by the state government within a period of nine months.

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