The Madhya Pradesh government has moved the State High Court seeking permission for opening the defunct Union Carbide Factory here for the public, 25 years after the lethal gas release from it killed thousands of people on the intervening night of December 2—3, 1984.

“We had plans to open the factory for public for a week from December 2, but we have now moved the High Court to seek permission for this since it is hearing a case in connection with the factory,” the State Urban Administration and Development, Bhopal Gas Tragedy Relief and Rehabilitation Minister Babulal Gaur said today.

Some NGOs ,however, are against opening of the factory for public, claiming that toxic waste was lying there.

International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal representative, Rachna Dhingra claimed that at least 10 governmental and non-governmental studies have confirmed presence of highly toxic chemicals in and around the factory.

Mr Dhingra said the Madhya Pradesh High Court in its order on October 29, 2005 had observed that the factory premises should be guarded by deputing armed personnel so that no outsider can enter there. The court had also passed orders for safe disposal of the toxic waste that was causing pollution.

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