Bhopal Gas Tragedy: Government Unconcerned


Survivors chain themselves near PM’s home


New Delhi: Thirtyseven Bhopal gas disaster survivors, including 22 women, were arrested on Wednesday when they chained themselves near Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s residence demanding the government to address their grievances.

The police said the people chained themselves to the railings opposite the heavilyguarded Prime Minister’s residence. “They were not allowed to go near the PM’s house, so they chained themselves. We cut their chains and took them into custody,” said Ajay Kashyap, joint commissioner of police (New Delhi Range).

Under the banner of Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Karmachari Sangh, Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Purush Sangarsh Morcha and Bhopal Group for Information and Action, the protesters sought legal action against Union Carbide and Dow Chemicals and better rehabilitation of the Bhopal victims.
On the night of Dec 2,3 1984, a Union Carbide pesticide plant in Bhopal spewed tonnes of poisonous methyl isocyanate gas, killing some 3,800 people instantly and many more later. Dow Chemicals later bought Union Carbide.

The world’s worst industrial disaster also affected thousands, many of who continue to suffer from various chronic diseases.

Contaminated groundwater around the plant area still infects people with various
ailments ranging from skin problems to birth defects, say activists working among the survivors.

Many of the survivors have been staging a protest in New Delhi for nearly two months. They had sought a meeting with the Prime Minister in January.

Nityanand Jayaraman, an activist, said: “On April 16, a Bhopal boy wrote a letter to the Prime Minister using blood drawn from the Bhopal victims, seeking an hour of his time. “The letter was delivered to the Prime Minister along with handwritten notes from more than 500 children from across the country,” he said.

2,800 people from 18 countries have sent fax to the PMO seeking to meet Singh. AGENCIES

Children of Bhopal gas tragedy survivors protest against the government apathy

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