Bhopal tragedy survivors to protest in Delhi

Bhopal tragedy survivors to protest in Delhi

Survivors of the Bhopal gas tragedy, who have cancelled their 18-day sit-in protest here on Friday, will move to Delhi to continue the stir.

Five social organisations have slammed the Centre and the Madhya Pradesh government for not helping the victims.

“The process of revising the damages to get more compensation from Union Carbide and Dow Chemical has begun. This follows the state government’s curative petition in the Supreme Court. But the Centre is trying to let off the American firm,” said Rashida Bee, president of Bhopal Gas Peedit Stationery Karmchari Sangh.

The Sangh plans to hold the indefinite sit-in in Delhi. They want the Centre to revise the figures of deaths and injuries caused by the disaster.

On December 3, 1984, several tonnes of methyl isocyanate leaked from Union Carbide’s pesticides plant in Bhopal, killing thousands of people. The Indian Council of Medical Research estimated that by 1997, over 15,000 people died due to the long-term effects of the poisonous gas though the government put the toll to 5,295.

It also claimed that chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan is yet to fulfill his promise of setting up an independent inquiry into the violence that broke out last year on the 27th anniversary of the disaster. It said by charging 2,000 gas victims with serious offences, the State government is criminalising their legitimate demands.

“It is like Chhattisgarh, where the government is putting tribals in jail,” said Balkrishna Namdeo, president of Bhopal Gas Peedit Nirashrit Pension Bhogi Sangharsh Morcha.