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SC reduces compensation for Uphaar tragedy victims

New Delhi , Thu, 13 Oct 2011 ANI

New Delhi, Oct 13 (ANI): The Supreme Court on Thursday nearly halved the sum of compensation to be paid to the victims of 1997 Uphaar Cinema fire tragedy case.


An apex court bench headed by Justice R V Raveendran reduced the amount of compensation from Rs 18 lakh to Rs 10 lakh to the families of deceased above 20 years of age and for the victims below 20 years, it was reduced to Rs 7.5 lakh from Rs 15 lakh.


The bench also drastically reduced the punitive damages to be paid by Uphaar Cinema owners, Ansal brothers - Gopal and Sushil, to the Centre from Rs 2.5 crore to Rs 25 lakh.


The apex court also absolved Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) and Delhi Police of their liabilities to bear 15 percent each of the compensation.


The court, however, retained the part of the High Court's verdict that mandated payment of Rs one lakh as compensation to those injured in the incident.


The bench also issued a slew of guidelines for the theatre owners and the government authorities for safe and incident-free screening of films in theatres.


The bench ordered for screening before each show a short documentary film showing dos and don'ts in case of any emergency arising out of fire.


The Uphaar Cinema fire, which occurred on June 13, 1997, during the screening of the film, "Border," had claimed the lives of 59 people.


The theatre was engulfed when an overheated generator burst in the basement of the building. (ANI)


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