Tribune News Service
Dehradun, April 20
The Uttarakhand Congress has sought ex gratia to the tune of at least Rs 5 lakh for the families of those killed in an accident yesterday. The bus they were travelling in fell into a river at Guma Antroli near Nerwa in Chopal of Shimla district (Himachal).
Addressing a press conference at the state Congress headquarters in Dehradun today, chief spokesman for Congress Mathura Dutt Joshi asserted that at least Rs 5 lakh must be provided as ex gratia to the families of the bus victims. He asserted that the ex gratia of Rs 1 lakh, announced by Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat, was a pittance and it needed to be raised.
He also accused the Chief Minister of being insensitive towards the tragedy. “It is strange that Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat was in the very Chakrata region yesterday participating in the Bissu fair but he did not find it appropriate to visit the site where the accident took place,” Mathura Dutt Joshi pointed out. “So many lives have been lost and the Chief Minister had no time to visit the incident site despite being in the vicinity,” he added.
The Congress spokesman pointed out that while the Char Dham yatra was about to start in the state, it was important for the state government to ensure the safety of bus passengers. He said the fitness of buses must be checked and any laxity in this regard must be strictly dealt with.
Mathura Dutt also accused the state government of failing on the law and order front. He said the Trivendra Singh Rawat-led BJP government had yet to complete a month in office, but incidents of theft, loot and murder were on the rise. He said the law and order situation in the state had come to a new low ever since the BJP government came to power.
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