Three former Tokyo Electric Power Company, Inc (TEPCO) executives were indicted Monday for negligence in relation to the nuclear radiation leak at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in 2011 due to a tsunami. The three utility executives are the first people to face criminal trial.
In 2011, a massive Tsunami had hit Japan that led to a meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. As many as 10,000 people had to evacuate the area and the investigation is going on. Investigations revealed that TEPCO ignored safety measures despite knowing about the oncoming tsunami. Lack of safety measures and inefficient risk management led to the disaster, reports Associated Press.
Tsunehisa Katsumata, who was chairman of TEPCO during the 2011 disaster, and two other executives were formally charged with professional negligence Monday. However, they were not arrested.
The residents of Fukushima believe that more details about TEPCO's role in the disaster will be revealed once the trial takes place. Experts, however, think that it will be hard to charge the company as the meltdown occurred due to tsunami, said AP.
TEPCO had earlier accepted that it could have done better at managing the disaster, but the massive scale of the tsunami was not anticipated.
The three executives were charged by a 11-member judicial committee.
After the disaster, all the 43 nuclear reactors in Japan were taken offline for checks and repairs. TEPCO hopes to restart two of its nuclear reactors even as investigations and clean-up continues at the Fukushima plant.