Seek adequate compensation from Carbide, Dow Chemical
On the 27th anniversary of the Bhopal gas tragedy on Saturday, victims and survivors, still waiting for relief, will register their protest by launching an indefinite rail roko andolan (stop trains).
“On December 3, please don't travel by train. Change your reservations now. We are sorry to cause you inconvenience but stopping the trains is the only effective way we can think of to get our urgent and important message through to the Prime Minister and the government,” read a notice on the Bhopal.net website, which is endorsed by five survivor organisations.
According to Bhopal Group for Information and Action member Rachna Dhingra: “We have been trying to talk to the government about this issue for a year without any resolution and all other modes of protest seem to have had little impact on the government.”
The victims' major demand is adequate compensation from Union Carbide Corporation and The Dow Chemical Company — the compensation which was “denied to us because the government sold us out in 1989 and let the corporation walk away; also, last year's curative petition filed by the government massively downplays the number of deaths and the severity of injuries.”
Members of another organisation of survivors, the Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Udyog Sangathan (BGPMUS), will stage a sit-in in front of the official residence of Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan to press the demand for “setting things right” at the Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Centre (BMHRC).
“The BMHRC refuses dialysis to patients with total renal failure after the first month, and private clinics are neither safe nor affordable to the poor patients,” says Abdul Jabbar, one of the first-generation victims and convener of the BGPMUS.