26/11 attacks: HC notice in compensation case

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat High Court today issued notice to the Centre and the state on a petition filed by the widow of one of the crew of the fishing trawler ‘MV Kuber’, hijacked by the terrorists who carried out the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.

Justice Rajesh Shukla sought the reponse by November 8.

The petitioner Jashiben’s husband Rameshbhai Bambhania and four other fishermen on MV Kuber were killed in 2008 by Ajmal Kasab and other Pakistani terrorists who hijacked the trawler in the Arabian Sea and used it to reach Mumbai.

Only the family of the captain of the trawler, Amarsinh Solanki, whose body was found, was paid a compensation of over Rs 5 lakh according to media reports, the petition said.

The families of the other four fishermen got no compensation other than Rs 50,000 given by the chief minister, as their bodies were never found, it said.

“As per the confession by Kasab, Bambhania and three others were killed immediately after hijacking and their bodies were thrown into the sea, while the captain was forced to sail to Mumbai,” the petition said.

Jashiben has also demanded that her husband be declared dead as over seven years have passed after the incident, and she should be paid the insurance money.

“The petitioner is the forgotten daughter of India…It has been extremely difficult in last seven to eight years for the petitioner to survive and sustain and to live with dignity after losing the sole breadwinner,” said the petition, demanding compensation from central government under the Central Scheme for Assistance to Civilian Victims of Terrorism, Communalism, Naxal Violence and land from the Gujarat government as per its 2003 resolution.

Jashiben has also not received Rs 1 lakh insurance money under a group insurance scheme, enrolled through the Gujarat Fisheries Central Co-operative Association, it said.