Warren Anderson has been “absconding” all these years, although the international media have documented his lavish lifestyle in suburban New York. It would be best for our government to drop the idea of sending an extradition request to the U.S. Washington has ruled out any further review of the investigation into the Bhopal gas disaster and refused to discuss Mr. Anderson's extradition. Instead of wasting time and money on the issue, New Delhi should ignore the man and look at stopping the reoccurrence of Bhopal-type industrial disasters.
Madan Menon Thottasseri,
Mr. Anderson was technically arrested and kept in the Union Carbide guest house. The American government was quick to act and exerted pressure on New Delhi. Arjun Singh, who was then Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, arranged for the State's private plane to fly him to Delhi and later out of the country. It was a clear case of locking the stable door after the horse had bolted.
Considering that it has taken 26 years for the judgment in the Bhopal gas tragedy to be delivered, pursuing Mr. Anderson's extradition seems to be an exercise in futility. The protectionist attitude of the U.S. towards its citizens will ensure that there is not the slightest chance of bringing him to India for trial. It would be better to concentrate on framing foolproof laws to protect the rights of Indian citizens if such industrial accidents were to happen again. It remains to be seen whether the government will displease the U.S., which seems to have its way all the time.
Many feel Mr. Anderson can still be extradited to India if the government plays its cards properly. It has failed to take advantage of our newly-acquired economic clout. We still have the mindset of a poor nation living on aid packages dispensed by rich nations.
The nuclear liability bill is a classic example of our subservient attitude. The Prime Minister should realise that no one will believe we are a strong nation unless we ourselves are convinced of it.