The cost of a poor Indian…

 

If you are born poor in India, you must be a terribly doomed soul. The cost of life of a poor man is negligible in a country of a billion plus and counting. In a country as ours, you remain nameless, faceless and even anonymous if you were cursed to be born below the poverty line. It is equally worse to be born as an animal in India, animals and the poor are a wretched lot here. It is not the fault of the poor for being born under the circumstances that they were. Tragically, the administration and all those concerned with delivering efficient administration well and truly expect the poor to fend for themselves, support is a “favor” that is seldom granted.  While the corrupt administration eats away the corpus, they burp at corpses. It is laughable that we have the gumption to call ourselves developing. After the Bhopal gas tragedy verdict, even “developing’ sounds inappropriate, we need to undo the developing and adopt the “undeveloped”status. The edifice that we have constructed with the pillars of so called economic liberalization remains almost surreal post the verdict. There is little point fighting tooth and nail to secure so called prestigious permanent seats in the UN or try to squeeze into the G8, if we as a nation do not know how to treat our poor.

It has taken twenty five years to come up with this. Not only has justice been delayed, it has well and truly been denied. I was too young to understand the impact of the 1984 gas tragedy but I remember visuals on Doordarshan vividly screening piles and piles of dead bodies. There was one haunting face of a baby, half hidden under a pile of rubble, years after the pyres died out; the face continues to haunt us today. Not only did close to five lakh lives devastated on the day, a few thousands perished on the day and in the subsequent days following the tragedy. Countless remain maimed and their children born with deficiencies and disorders. It would be impossible to evaluate the quantum of this tragedy either numerically or for that matter even verbally. The gas tragedy did not only cast its hellish wrath on the current generation, it freely bequeathed it to the next. The pain and suffering of the victims were barely audible over the last twenty five years, until now.

And even now, what makes us all listen to the cries of the victims? What makes us notice whatever little are left of them and their ragged lives that they are desperately trying to hold together? To rephrase, are we noticing only the verdict or do we notice the impact of the verdict by stepping into the shoes of these victims? We notice them because of two reasons. The despicable judgment passed and the media attention that the verdict has been getting. I sincerely hope the media attention is able to deliver justice for the victims and hope this is not news left biting the cloudy dust that the media continually spurns with its trotting hooves.

The other point to consider is what lessons have we learnt post 1984.Have we fully evaluated Union Carbide’s and the State’s failure in disaster management? What assurance is there that factories such as Union Carbide are still not continuing to follow the same steps? Are they still using hazardous chemicals (MIC) instead of less dangerous ones? Is possible corroding material still being used in pipelines? Are safety systems being turned off in order to be more economical at the work place? Without a doubt there are still many factories and industrial plants in India which are a ticking time bomb. Large scale disasters in this country are held off due to fluke, no other reason.

Besides, nobody has a clue where the then Chairman of Union Carbide is. He remains virtually untouchable and has been absconding in the last twenty five years. I bet Warren Anderson is sailing on a yacht some where.

“Around 22,000 dead. More than 1, 20,000 injured.  Rs 1 lakh for each body. Rs 25,000 for every poisoned lung and damaged heart and blinded eyes. 26 years of long wait. And just 2 years in jail for the men who committed the worst crime against the people of this country. And this mockery of justice after such a long wait. Twenty six years after 40 tonnes of lethal gas seeped into the lungs of Bhopal, some 17,000 men and women are still waiting for the so-called compensation. Thousands more are still waiting to be accepted as victims. People of Bhopal are still drinking toxic water poisoned by Union Carbide in December 1984. And the main culprit is living life king-size in a mansion in New York. No country sells its people so cheap.” – TOI

I doubt justice can ever be served on tragedies with such devastating proportions. But, as a country we expect apathy, we expect a reasonable amount of compensation; we expect the guilty to be severely punished. At a time when the US is considering suing BP for the devastating oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, India has been unable to touch an American company, not even with its little finger.

 

 

 

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45 Responses to “The cost of a poor Indian…”

  1. Aishwarya Says:

    Anderson can sail in a yacht or hide in a mansion, but the face of this child and the cries of anguish of an entire nation will haunt him to his death. Life is his punishment.

  2. Asih – Reports indicate this man is senile and deaf. Not sure how far this is true though.

    • Aishwarya Says:

      Sharmila – 26 yrs is a looonggg time. He sounds like our govt and judicial system – senile, deaf, and slow…

      Reader – My pleasure.:)

  3. Sharmila,

    Thanks to Aishwarya for drawing my attention to the new post. I had lost track of the blog since the cyclone.

    “Cost” of Life? I don’t think there is such a thing. Its the “Price” of Life as in something paid for. But you would know better – you are a chartered accountant.

    As a layman, I can certainly voice my opinion about the “Value” of life – its performance.

    The imbalance of value in our socialist set-up is tangible. The multipliers are to the tune 2500%.

    A produce that sells for 100 Rs a quintal (100 Kg) i.e. Rs 1 per Kg reaches the consumer at rs 25/- per Kg.

    What is the value-addition about? What is the value about? 65% Direct and Indirect taxes.. 1000% in cash transactions… 500% in corruption… 500% for sustaining the lawless… 500% to pay off balance of payments to feed American families…

    For every 100 Rs worth of work done by an Indian, he actually gets on Rs 7/- worth of anything in return. The rest goes to the the Indian government and foreign investors.

    What is the price of his life? What is the value of his work?

    Accidental death is not the only price that we pay… the survivors and their children pay and shall continue to pay till there is US30 billion dollar BOP deficit! This can only rise… never reduces…

    In 1984 India did not have laws to protect workers from foreign industrialists. Mr. Arjun Singh the Chief Minister of Bhpal (MP) escorted honorable Anderson and kissed his ass goodbye. Rajiv Gandhi brought The Environmemntal protection Law in 1986. In 1984 India had gone bankrupt. The Gold standard had to be scrapped. IMF and World Bank were dictating reforms to our representative on their board (Mr. Manmohan Singh) who is today our PM.

    There was nothing in the law to hold any foreigner responsible for killing our people.

    THe westerners were laughing at our dumb politicians who were no better than African leaders in Ghana or Nigeria.

    Watch Obama skinning the life out of BP for killing dolphins off the coast of Louisiana.

    Let me give you an example of how these western “Experts” are treated in the ME.

    In 1993, a pressurised pipeline was cut by a working crew killing 3 and maiming 7 Indians on the spot. The cut-end of the high pressure pipeline whip lashed like a rocket launch gone wrong. Pieces of the dead had to be picked from upto 100 meters.

    The General Manager and his Project Manager of the company were arrested, passports confiscated immediately. Cases were registered, charge-sheeted, tried and sentenced without any option – all within 6 months of the accident. Both were whites.

    Justice to be done has to be available!

    In the Union Carbide case, Justice Ahamadi had no law to sentence anyone for liabilities. The only one he could and did use was death caused by Negligence!

    We are not prepared to become an industrialised nation.

    Lets stick to farming and consumerism!

    Sorry, I didn’t mean to be so pathetic. But couldn’t stop midway.

    I do believe in forgiving for a cause. Nature hurts itself much more severely than humans can ever do. A forest fire, an earthquake or volcanic magma destroys more life and property than any human adventure can ever do. Besides, humans are as much a part of the earth’s nature as all other creations. We are not invaders.

    Forgiving is not an art, its an indicator of integrity.

    If we learn from an incident, we still have something to bequeath.

    Let us write new laws to protect ourselves and the gen-next from loan sharks and venture capitalists.

    • Sorry for the use of the word “Whites”. That sounds racist. I meant foreigners from the West. One was British the other was a Canadian.

      I don’t believe in races.

    • Reader – Well said. Re – the cost of life, it is the actual valuation of his worth arrived numerically in order to sustain the next of kin. By Granting a compensation of INR 200,000 for 25 years, this person is woth 8,000 PA. He has paid the price with his life as it is for the carelessness of the Industrialists and the Government, The then Congress CM of MP, Arjun Singh escorted Anderson to the plane and helped him flee.

  4. Sharmila

    Well done once again in bringing to the forefront how we as a nation continue to fail on so many fronts….the root cause is rampant corruption for which there does not seem to be any radical solution

  5. Sameer Chouhan Says:

    Sharmilaji,

    as usual a very balance views…I like all your comments…

    Sameer Chouhan

  6. Sameer Chouhan Says:

    आदरणीय शर्मिलाजी,

    बहुत ही मेहनत और गहराई में जाकर लिखा हुआ लेख है लेकिन आपकी सोच लगभग सभी आम भारतीयों की सोच है ……क्षमापार्थी हूँ मैं इससे पूरी तरह सहमत नहीं हूँ…..कैसे ?

    जब बरसों पहले इस फेक्ट्री को भोपाल के बाहर बनाया गया तब कोई कानून का उलंघन नहीं हुआ था क्योंकि तब इस जगह पर कोई नहीं रहता था. जैसा की हर फेक्टरियों के साथ होता है (खासकर आयल मिल / दाल मिल/ कपडा मिल) इसके साथ भी यही हुआ कि लोगों ने इसके आसपास बसना चालू कर दिया और रोकने टोकने का रिवाज़ तो नहीं है लोकतंत्र में (वोट देने यही मजदूर वर्ग ही जाता है , आप और मैं सिर्फ कागज़ के शेर है)…..इसीका खामियाजा भुगता है भोपाल के निर्दोष लेकिन अनपढ़ और बेवकूफ लोगों नें …….

    अब आप इसे यूनियन कार्बाईड वालों की बदकिस्मती कहिये लेकिन या जो भी, लेकिन इसमे फेक्ट्री से सम्बंधित कोई भी आदमी जिम्मेदार नहीं हो सकता अगर सेफ्टी के नोर्म्स फोलो नहीं किये जाते थे तो सरकारी फेक्ट्री-इन्स्पेक्टर क्या कर रहा था. इस मोहल्ले के ‘कोर्पोरेटर’, मेम्बर ऑफ़ स्टेट एसेम्बली, मेंबर ऑफ़ पार्लियामेंट क्या कर रहे थे ? अरे ! कलेक्टर और म्युनिसपल कमिश्नर क्या कर रहे थे…..

    जो केमिकल फेक्ट्री अमेरिका या यूरोप में नहीं लगाई जा सकती वह किसी भी ‘थर्ड-वर्ल्ड’ (जैसे भारत आदि) में लगायी जा सकती है ऐसा क्यूँ ???

    अमेरिकन कंपनी को जिम्मेदार ठहराने से पहले हमें अपने दामन में झाँक कर देखना चाहिए…..जिन लोगों की जान गयी और जिन लोगों की जान इसीतरह की केमिकल फेक्टरियों की वजह से जायेगी उसके लिए सिर्फ जिम्मेदार होंगे : पढ़े-लिखे लेकिन नाकारा भारतीय….

    जय हिंद ! मेरा देश महान !

    समीर चौहान.

    • Sameerji – aapke soch tho bilkul teek hai. mainyey nahi bol rahi hoon ki india sirph union carbide ko choo nahi sake, my tho is poori disaster ke cause Company or Government, dhono par daal rahi hoon. Dhono barabar mujrim tho hai, lekin, in dhono main, company ko punish karna govt se thoda easy hona chaiyein, lekin, yey bhi nahi ho raha hain. Isley , maine aisa conclude kia end main.

      • Sameer Chouhan Says:

        Thanks for reply.

        But what I want to tell is there should be a strong law for not allowing the people to settle in and around or nearby to the factory area (you must be remember that Delhi incident/drive by the dixit govt) . We are common people are responsible for any mishap but illiteracy playing its major part. My basic question again come to mind that over population is behind all the misery facing our nation and world as whole.

      • Sameerji – I agree. When i meant Govt, I mean the laws that they formulate as well including allowing settlements near hazardous industries and factories. Once again, population is a topic to be fully spoken of. I know I have not written anything on this as promised earier, but I soon shall. Thanks for your patience,

  7. S.M.Vyas Says:

    Sharmilaji,

    Excellant & brilliant write up.Almost complete & comprehensive, logical; & yet; with full flow. And equally forceful. And yet compact!

    When I said,almost complete,what I wanted to say is I could not understand why & how the Supreme Court wwas restricted or incapacited to pronounce the judgement in communserate with the gravity of offence. When theatre owner of Delhi is personally held guilty for the incidant of fire;much less in gravity & implications as compared to this one; why not Warren Anderson ?
    And further why the compensation amount/punishment is so meagre/less ?

    But,the judgement is pronounced.Not much can be achieved by only criticising it.Remedy lies in doing something more & concrete.

    At first,let us wake up MEDIA. What they are doing now ? They are known for making mountain out of mole/nothing.They are also known for repeated coverage of the less significant instances.They are yet to cover/highlight properly.
    Secondly,Can we not start a sort of signature campaign through this or bigb blog;to express our strong displeasure & convey the rep. of the Company about their moral/social/ethical;if not legal alone;obligation to cover adequate relief measures & consider expenditure on environmental issues focussed at places particularly in & around Bhopal.

    Third,to provide for medical treatment of all affected persons.

    Is the effect still present in the environment/water ? Then further corrective actions to be sponsored by the Company.

    Till then let us boycott the company – in all respect & from all quarters.

    I hv not completed this. May be I will come back again on the subject.

    Regards,

    S.M.Vyas

  8. The irony is not in the products that the company makes. It is the business strategies which evade the users. The company that was Union Carbide has long been dissolved. It doesn’t exist anymore. The US parent was absorbed by Dow Chemicals, the single largest conglomerate in the world of hydrocarbons, with over 700 research products.

    What are we going to boycott? Teflon? DC batteries? Paint technology? Industrial chemicals? Refining technology? The clothes that we wear have to be washed in a chemical that is made by Dow. The batteries used to fire DC motors for starting turbines in Power stations are made by Dow.

    Boycotting products will not serve our needs.

    Lets not skew our sense of justice to deny our own shortcomings. We need to respect our own industry. We need laws to protect the interests of our own people. We need to support our own intellectual capacity.

    We shall not dig out and eat our own roots – the tree will collapse.

    First our politicians lost credibility.. next the bureaucrats and their corrupt ways… now the industrialists… where will this all end? Another Civil War?

    Who will benefit?

    ===

    Chalo k chal ke siyaasii muqaamiron se kahein
    Ke hamko jang-o-jadal ke chalan se nafrat hai

    … … … Come lets tell the political speculators
    … … … That we detest this practice of war and mayhem

    Jise lahoo ke sivaa koi rang na raas aaye
    Hamein hayaat ke us pairahan se nafrat hai

    … … … One that savors only color of blood
    … … … We detest this adornment of life

    Kaho k ab koii qaatil agar idhar aayaa
    To har qadam pe zameeN tang hotii jaayegi

    … … … Now if another butcher comes this way
    … … … He will find a harder land to deal with

    Har ek mauj-e-havaa rukh badal ke jhaptegii
    Har ek shaaKh rag-e-sang hotii jaayegii

    … … … The wind will turnaround and blow in rage
    … … … Every off-shoot will be sharp like arrows

    Utho ke aaj har ik jangjoo se ye kah dein
    Ke hamko kaam kii Khaatir kaloN kii haajat hai

    … … … Rise, let every war monger be told that
    … … … We need implements to work and achieve

    Hamein kisii kii zameen chheen_ne kaa shauq nahin
    hameiN to apnii zameeN par haloN kii haajat hai

    … … … We do not seek to conquer land from others
    … … … We need ploughs to till our own land

    Kaho k ab koii taajir idhar ka ruKh na kare
    Ab is jaa koii kuNvaarii na bechi jaayegii

    … … … Tell the merchant to stay away from here
    … … … We do not sell our daughters anymore

    Ye khet jaag pade, uth khadii hui faslein
    Ab is jagah koii kyaarii na bechii jaayegi

    … … … These farms are alive, and crops have risen
    … … … Now we will not sell our ploughs and tools

    Ye sarzameen hai Gautam kii aur Naanak kii
    is arz-e-paak pe wahshii na chal sakeiNge kabhii

    … … … This is the land of Buddha and Guru Nanak
    … … … Fanatics shall not tread on this holy land

    Hamaaraa khoon amaanat hai nasl-e-nau ke liye
    Hamaare khoon pe lashkar na pal sakenge kabhi

    … … … Our blood is the treasure that belongs to our children
    … … … Our blood will not be used to breed armies again

    Tasavvuraat kii parchhaiyaan ubhartii hain

    … … … Shadows of my imagination ascend

    Kaho ki aaj bhii ham sab agar Khamosh rahe
    To is damakte hue KhaakadaaN kii Khair nahiiN

    … … … Announce that if we remain silent again today
    … … … This bright world will not be safe

    JunooN kii dhaalii huii “atomii” balaaon se
    zameeN kii Khair nahiiN, aasmaaN kii Khair nahiiN

    … … … This atomic energy sown by the seeds of uprising
    … … … Shall threaten the earth and the sky alike

    Guzishtaa jang mein ghar hi jale magar is baar
    Ajab nahin k ye tanhaaiyaan bhii jal jaayeiN

    … … … In the last war, only the houses had been cindered
    … … … But this time, even our solitudes may be cremated

    Guzishtaa jang mein paikar jale magar is baar
    Ajab nahin k ye parchhaiyaan bhii jal jaayein

    … … … In the last war, only the bodies had been set afire
    … … … But this time, even our shadows may be scorched

    Tasavvuraat kii parchhaiyaan ubhartii hain

    … … … Shadows of my imagination ascend

    —Sahir Ludhianvi

    (Translit Mine)

    [Sorry for the length of the comment]

    • Reader – We need to start a civil disobedience movement then. I am extremely motivated by the lyrics now.

      • Sharmila,

        Thanks. Civil Disobedience is a pwoerful tool. And requires extreme discipline in thought and action.

        I shall describe it in a separate comment.

        Sometimes, you trigger such fundamental questions, or perhaps its my outlook!

  9. Sharmila – What has happened has happened. I only hope and pray that something like this never again happens any where in the world. I can understand and relate to the agony and frustration of the affected and those who still have the heart to spare a thought for the unfortunate and innocent victims of the biggest industrial tragedy in the world. I can also understand the limitations and the hurdles that the judiciary must have faced while probing a case of such magnitude. But I still feel that 25 years is a long, long time, not to say anything about the verdict. It’s beyond comprehension and it is a joke, a very cruel joke. The world must be laughing at us. I feel ashamed of myself. It’s a pity. It’s just not acceptable. It’s a shame on us. God, please save us.

    • Melwyn – The verdict is indeed the cruelest of jokes. As I mentioned somewhere, disasters of large scale proportions do not happen on a daily basis only because of fluke or God’s grace. One of the two.

  10. I’m sorry, I got too carried away.

  11. The current scenario on law makiing is a big joke. All the political parties Congress, BJP, CPM etc are crying shame in a single voice.

    Reminds me of a day in the Secretariat in Hyderabad. The staff had gone on a one day strike against the CM, Mr. N. T. Ramarao, in demand for a pay hike.

    To their surprise and dismay, at around 11 AM, NTR joined the strike himself! He sat with the rest of the staff demanding a pay hike for himself – from himself!

    The leaders of the strike were so fed up, they called it off and went back to their offices!

    Today, in the UCI case, all the polticians are making the same noise forgetting that they are the ones who are empowered to write the law!

    Even the Law Minister has gone on record that he is not satisfied with the law… now who is going to do anything about that? The American Senate???

    The ruling government in Delhi has become a medieval farce – Like Julius Caeser’s harem of female escorts and castrated eunuchs – the only voice that is allowed to go on air is of the one that has been neutered!

    The Ex-CBI director, Mr. Joginder Singh says the CBI is commanded by the Law Minister, hence the charges against Mr. Anderson were diluted. The Supreme Court diluted the charges on the CBI’s petition. Chief Justice Ahmadi says he was not aware of the review petition filed by N.D. Jayaprakash. Hence culpable homicide was not considered in this as 20,000 dead was only a number.

    All these sound bites going on air in India while in a single motion, the senators in the US demanded yesterday that Anderson should stand charges and Dow must take action. We haven’t heard anything on these lines from our own MPs because Caeser hasn’t spoken yet, Sonia is quiet!

    Meanwhile, our ministers are in Switzerland, standing with suitcases in their hands along with their African counterparts, outside the Bank of Zurich!

    • Reader – Sorry, but this one did make me laugh. The sarcasm and the crisp tone is unbeatable. That damn Caesar will never speak. Portia is probably the owner of the mansion where Anderson resides.

      • Sharmila,

        It was meant to laugh! There is a Bertram residing permanently inside me!

        🙂

  12. Sharmila,

    Civil Disobedience is a tough call. I had the opportunity to study Mahatma Gandhi’s methods, when I appeared for a test on ‘Gandhian Thoughts’ at Wardha in June ’80.

    Gandhi’s method requires a character of merciless justice. I feel it’s more violent in a sense than physical warfare.

    Gandhi achieved it by example. He disciplined himself severely if he made errors and found good reasons to smile at his own pain. He taught the same rules to his own children as he did for the world around him because he was unable to discriminate as such – what was good for the world was good for his children – the expediency of the moment was never on his radar!

    Civil disobedience is actually a rational belief in a code of conduct.

    I believe in every person’s right to be wealthy through his/her own effort. I live by that belief myself. I don’t covet, steal or sieze the unearned. Nor do I let others sieze mine. My kindness is not a sacrifice. It is a sharing and recognition of the dignity of another deserving person. I do not surrender it as a society’s right, even if it may be written in a thousand different ways in the law books. A sense of justice is a virtue. It needs to be conceived and practiced with discipline to deliver results.

    Gandhi’s civil disobedience movement was very aptly scripted in a quote, “60,000 Britishers cannot rule 400 million Indians, if those Indians refused to co-operate – the mantra is peaceful, non-violent, non-cooperation!”

    It can be achieved succesfully only by those who can be happy with it and smile at the results. It is not done out of vengence or grievance. It is not done for pride or glory. It is not done out of arrogance. It is done by the competent and capable to live happily and in a free human society. It eradicates dependance and bondage at the basic level of survival.

    India has always been a land of surplus. We never needed anything from the outside world until the rulers introduced Keynesian economics of managing printed currency, and effectively created a conduit for stealing the value of people’s work. Those who have fallen prey to its machinations need only to stand up and say, ‘No!’.

    Civil Disobedience is extremely cruel on parasites. That is one of the reasons why our Trade Unions and political socialites don’t use it’s devices, apart from a strike or hartaal. The rest of the method is self-destructive for parasites or second-handers anywhere – be it in a family, a community, a society or a nation.

    Civil disobedience requires enormous amount of preparation as Gandhi demonstrated in South Africa. It needs a careful re-structuring of all the means of survival and sustenance; to change the conditions of one’s living and learn to be happy in the world of individual values.

    Above all it must be remembered that Civil disobedience is not a mass phenomenon. It is done by individuals. The mass impact is what the opposition is seeing and trying to defend against! Civil disobedience becomes a nightmare for those who try to kill it because it doesn’t exist as a social law.

    I think it is a tough call…

    • Correction: Seize not sieze. And now I shall cease.

    • So True Reader – Excellent set of thoughts here. Morever, who , and where is there a Gandhi to lead us today? Name one? Not one comes to mind.

      • Sharmila,

        The Mahatma was not the cause of the movement. He was only a spiritual facilitator. Its the individuals who drift into that mode due to the conditions offered to them.

        For instance, there are no natives in Goa. The portugese had a methodical way of occupying land. They systematically massacred the youth and married their women. They built towns, cities, churches and ports for exporting local goods to Portugal and trade in Europe.

        Today, Tamil Eelamur is on a fast track. The traders are hindered by the Center’s List and the federal government’s control on exports. They hope to break free from those restrictions and resume international trade at their own will which they enjoyed during the days of the East India Company.

        India is already on its way to become a federal union of autonomous states, a la-USSR.

        This is Civil Disobedience in action against the failing standards of a central goevrnment… People give up freedom for a good cause… they take it back when it doesn’t serve the purpose… No lawmaker in the world can breach that right…

        🙂

      • Reader – Atleast there was a spiritual facilitator who existed in this country. Disobedience is possible down to the smallest unit. One way, is to possibly stop voting if one is not happy with the candidature itself. Another extreme for the Govt would be is to make it compulsory and impose a fine if you dont. The ID card system which Nandan Nilekhani is now setting up will facilitate this process. Abstaining from the process of electing corrupt officials is probably a good start.

  13. Dear All,

    I quote below a plea from Greenpeace India to sign a petition
    +++
    Even with the injustices of Bhopal right in front of their eyes, the government seems to be merely considering cosmetic changes to the nuclear liability bill, that mean nothing.

    The proposed bill appeases foreign corporations by allowing them to get away by paying a meagre compensatory amount in case of a nuclear accident in the country. The Bhopal judgment highlights the manner in which an American corporation has been so easily let off after causing the deaths of over 25,000 people and affecting thousands more.

    We cannot let another Bhopal happen! Over 1.8 lakh people have already signed the petition asking Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to stop the bill in its current form. More signatures will add strength to the opposition to this bill.

    Watch this video and then sign the petition to help add more pressure on the PM..

    http://www.greenpeace.org/india/stop-another-bhopal
    +++

    Pls support this initiative

  14. I wonder if such a situation would ever have arisen in any other country. I love my nation, albeit we cannot forget as you rightly said that we are truly undeveloped. which country would allow its citizens to be treated like garbage, the way Union Carbide and the recent verdict has. Why does the judiciary treat its citizens as just numbers. Its everywhere. An Ajmal AAmir Kasab, barges into a station full of people and kills them, all the action being caught on camera. Still we are having him arguing that he didnt do it . Am sorry i do not understand a system , whatever name you give it, which has such nil respect for the individual.

    • Smiles – Thanks for your comment. It is an irony is it not? We attach more importance to the rich and famous, the ones who are fewer in number and treat the majority like animals.

  15. Surely,even after the verdict has been passed,many questions have been left unanswered.Instead of blaming Anderson,India has to revamp its judicial system which has witnessed yet another denial of justice.

    If we take the Headley case into consideration,I don’t think so far we have been able to get something out of him with respect to the 26/11 case.He being a US national has managed to escape easily so far.Chances of any future interrogation are also bleak.And what about that when 3,000 people were killed in the attacks of 9/11.The US had almost decimated Afghanistan and Iraq thereby killing thousands of innocent people.And not to mention about the cruelty and agonies suffered by those in Guantanamo Bay.

    We can just hope that the people of Bhopal get justice.And when I say justice,it never means the one ordered by our court.Its an insult to the word itself.

    • Salman – 100% right. Headley will never give India what it wants to hear, no matter what. Good to see you here. ALso, visited your blog, it is shaping up well. Give me some time and I shall start commenting in your space shortly.

      • Ohh!!!It would be a great honour if you read my blog.Please take your time.I am in no hurry,nor should you be.Your comment would really mean a lot.To be really honest,it would be to me,what AB’s comment is to you.Did I say it right?Anyways you must have understood what I meant.By the way,how did you get to it?Through AB’s blog?Anyways,I know you already have many other blogs to read regularly,adding one more would make it even more difficult.So,again I would request you not to over burden yourself.

      • Salman – All I can do is smile at this comment especially with the AB comparison:) You will have me on your blog soon.

      • Thanks for the assurance di.Now,I myself am smiling at it.But I mean it…..

  16. Sharmila,

    Any mention of the Bhopal Gas Tragedy….brings in a feeling of sheer disgust. Special helpline cells were created, special treatment centres were set up, doctors were appointed to treat the victims, compensations were announced, NGOs became active, aids and funds from foreign countries poured in, educational institutions collected funds and sent them to the various “gas relief funds” that were set up….and how much of all this actually reached the victims??? The bureaucrats, the politicians the babus and those who jumped into the fray in the name of “social service” made hay while the sun shone…and how well it shone…well enough to fill in the coffers of these vested interests. I, for one, am completely disillusioned with the system. My contribution to the betterment of this sorry state of affairs is to do my own bit with sincerity and honesty! It just doesn’t seem to be enough! I am a resident of the state of MP and therefore got to know a lot about the various corruption issues and scams involved in this tragic case. Why blame the insensitivity of the Americans or Anderson? Look at the attitude of our own people who were witness to all the sufferings and anguish of the victims of this tragedy! I am completely disillusioned, disappointed and disgruntled. The eternal optimist in me has taken a back seat as of now!

    Sharmila, you write and express your thoughts exceedingly well. It is an oft repeated cliche… can’t help saying it all over again 🙂

    Shubha

    • Shubha – thank you for your valuable comment as always. You sound as anguished as I with the state of affairs of this country. Somewhere I hope there is a glimmer of hope, I am yet to see it though, sadly.

  17. MonaLisa Says:

    Every one is after Warren Anderson now….lol…after 26 yrs. of the mishap..!? What were ppl doing then..!? why wait for so long!?
    When the Gov. local,state & central do not care for their citizens lives…who to blame..!? any xyz co. can come in and do the same again. And why wouldn’t they..? At Least expense who wouldn’t love the max profit..!?
    India don’t believe in ‘value’ of a Human life. Probably pets enjoy better lives than a commoner.
    Judiciary system ,rather all systems are a big sham.
    ‘Justice delayed is Justice denied’. Here it is delayed and denied both…what would one call it then..!?

    • MonaLisa – Please have a look at the petition that Veekay has posted from Greenpeace. It takes an initiative from GP to do something for India.

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