13th Nov 2014, New Delhi: National Alliance of People’s Movements extends its full support and stands in solidarity with the hunger and water-less fast of five women survivors of Bhopal Gas Disaster, as more than thousand Bhopalis continue their dharna at Jantar Mantar for the 4th day. We salute the 30 years long struggle of the people of Bhopal who have pioneered the movement against industrial disasters and brought the issue of nexus between negligent corporates and corrupt governments to exploit nature, people and places to the international and national discourses. Despite continuous repression and apathy of one government after the other, and disappointments even from the judiciary, the struggle for justice for Bhopal goes on. NAPM shares their pain and agony, as well as the spirit and determination to fight for survival and dignity.
We endorse the demand of the struggling survivors and call upon the Government and the Prime Minister to:
- Ensure additional compensation to all the survivors of disaster
- Revise the figures of disaster related death and injury in the Curative Petition filed by the central Government in the Supreme Court.
While Bhopal Gas Disaster took as many as 20000 lives, dissatisfactory compensation of mere 470 million has been fixed for the Bhopal Survivors whereas in the BP oil spill disaster of 2010, which claimed 11 lives, around 40 billion worth compensation, losses and penalties have to be borne by BP, another American corporation. This unashamed inequality in terms of compensation clearly has a racist undertone to it, where lives of some people are of much less worth than those of others.
Ironically, on one hand the new central government and the MP state government extend welcome to American corporations and investors with lucrative offers. On the other hand, American DOW Chemical Company, the main culprit in the mass killings of Bhopal, has been disrespecting the Indian judiciary by defying summons of Bhopal District Court, like it did just yesterday. We demand the Government to ensure that Dow Chemical does not get away with disrespecting Indian courts. We strongly urge the government not to allow Dow Chemical to make any investments till it obeys the summons of Indian courts.
The National Alliance of People’s Movements wants to remind the Government that we will not let another Bhopal-like disaster destroy and displace us. The proposed nuclear power plants at Koondakulam, Jaitapur, and many such dangerous chemical hubs and power projects all over the country pose grave risks, which cannot and must not be ignored at any cost. There cannot be any compromise with the lives of the people and the environment in the name of infrastructure and ‘development’, be it the hazardous industrial and chemical projects, environmentally unsafe power plants or big dams. We demand stricter implementation of environmental safeguards, more scrutiny of multinationals and corporations and priority to people over profit! No More Bhopals!!
30 years is enough! Justice in Bhopal NOW!!
Medha Patkar – Narmada Bachao Andolan and the National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM); Prafulla Samantara – Lok Shakti Abhiyan & Lingraj Azad– Niyamgiri Suraksha Samiti, NAPM, Odisha; Dr. Sunilam, Aradhna Bhargava – Kisan Sangharsh Samiti & Meera – Narmada Bachao Andolan, NAPM, MP; Suniti SR, Suhas Kolhekar, Prasad Bagwe – NAPM, Maharashtra; Gabriel Dietrich, Geetha Ramakrishnan – Unorganised Sector Workers Federation, NAPM, TN; C R Neelakandan – NAPM Kerala; P Chennaiah & Ramakrishnan Raju – NAPM Andhra Pradesh, Arundhati Dhuru, Richa Singh – NAPM, UP; Sister Celia – Domestic Workers Union & Rukmini V P, Garment Labour, NAPM, Karnataka; Vimal Bhai – Matu Jan sangathan & Jabar Singh, NAPM, Uttarakhand; Anand Mazgaonkar, Krishnakant – Paryavaran Suraksh Samiti, NAPM Gujarat; Kamayani Swami, Ashish Ranjan – Jan Jagran Shakti Sangathan & Mahendra Yadav – Kosi Navnirman Manch, NAPM Bihar; Faisal Khan, Khudai Khidmatgar, NAPM Haryana; Kailash Meena, NAPM Rajasthan; Amitava Mitra & Sujato Bhadra, NAPM West Bengal; B S Rawat – Jan Sangharsh Vahini & Rajendra Ravi, Madhuresh Kumar and Kanika Sharma – NAPM, Delhi