Tsunami aid: hearing adjourned

Staff Reporter

KOCHI: A Division Bench of the Kerala High Court on Thursday adjourned to August 25 the hearing on a report filed by the Kerala State Legal Services Authority (KELSA) relating to the distribution of compensation to tsunami victims.

The report filed by KELSA secretary U. Sarathchandran said that despite sending a letter, the Chief Secretary had not furnished the information regarding the mode of distribution and accounting of compensation to the victims.

The Bench comprising Chief Justice Rajiv Gupta and Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan adjourned the case to enable the Government pleader to get instructions from the Government. In the report, the secretary pointed out that the High Court had earlier directed the State Government that the funds meant for tsunami victims be kept in a separate account so as to have a clear picture about the same. The court had also directed that priority areas be identified for the distribution of compensations. Top priority should be given to those whose houses had been washed away in the tsunami. The court had issued the directions while disposing of a writ petition filed by N. Dinesh, member secretary, Indian Psychiatric Society, Kerala branch. The report said that though KELSA had issued orders on many applications seeking compensations, it could not implement the same as the State Government had not submitted information on the mode of distribution and accounting.