Category Archives: Community Blog

Survivors and our dedicated campaign volunteers around the globe regularly reflect on the fight for justice in Bhopal and our experiences with Dow Chemical.

LowDOWn – July 2015

Bhopal LowDOWn – July 2015

Brought to you by the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal

In this issue:

1. Press Releases

2. Remembering Daya Varma and Ward Morehouse
 

3. In the News

4. Take Action!
 
5. Call for Coordinating Committee Members (2015-2016) 

6. Support the Bhopal Campaign


1. Press Releases

  • June 5, 2015 – Residents of Water-Contaminated Areas Ask the Government of India “When Will Union Carbide’s Toxic Waste Be Cleaned Up”? Read the Press Release here.
  • May 26, 2015 – Modi Government Completes One Year – Bhopal Gas Victims Have Nothing to Cheer About. Read the Press Release here.

  • March 17, 2015 – Bhopal Gas Victims Condemn Repeated Non-Appearance of the Dow Chemical Company, USA in the Bhopal District Court. Read the Press Release here.
2. Remembering Daya Varma and Ward MorehouseDr. Daya Varma, life-long communist, scientist, activist, dreamer, pharmacologist, professor emeritus at McGill University, Montreal, passed away on March 22 2015. Please join us in honoring the life of Daya Varma, a long-time supporter of Bhopal gas survivors, who carried out much-needed medical research on the impact of the disaster. You can read about his life and legacy by clicking here.

“Daya inspired as much through his knowledge and talents as through his humility and simplicity. A multi-splendored personality who will be sorely missed by many across the world and especially those in Montreal where he lived half a century and left his mark on many institutions of social relevance. A life truly worth celebrating!” – TK Raghunathan

June 30th 2015 marked the third anniversary of the passing of Ward Morehouse. To read aboutWard’s life as a human rights and anti-corporate activis activist please click here.

“Ward was a personal mentor to me, and one of the founders of the modern anti-corporate personhood
movement. 
He was gentle, patient and kind to people, and a fierce and tireless warrior for peace, justice, ecology and democracy. I feel honored to have known him as a colleague, and lucky to have known him as a friend.” – David Cobb 

3. In the News

4. Take Action

  • The year of Modi’s rule, is a year of deliberate laxity by the government towards the criminal American corporations and neglect towards the medical care and economic rehabilitation of the victims. Tweet @narendramodi and don’t forget to use #bhopal30We’ve already composed a sample tweet for you. To send your tweet click here.
  • CUPE (Canadian Union of Public Employees), Local 3906 at McMaster University Endorses the Bhopal Campaign! For support in getting your union to do the same, contact us at justice@bhopal.net 
  • Support the upcoming documentary, Bhopal 84

In the early eighties Musharraf Ali bought a video camera to film weddings at his hometown of Bhopal in central India. On the night of December 2, 1984, forty-three tons of toxic gases leaked from massive storage chambers within Union Carbide’s Bhopal plant into the surrounding city, killing thousands overnight. Mr. Musharraf fled with his family and neighbors to safety. Two days later he returned to ground zero in Bhopal, moved to record with his ‘wedding camera’ everything he observed in the first days after the disaster. Fearing arrest and confiscation from Indian authorities, he kept the tapes for over twenty years without showing them to anyone. “Bhopal 84” makes this footage public for the first time.

Read more at: http://www.bhopal84.com/

5. Call for Coordinating Committee Members (2015-2016)ICJB North America is looking for Coordinating Committee (CC) members for 2015/2016. As part of the CC, you will be responsible for helping develop the campaign in North America. Below are a list of the positions we are seeking:

  • Fundraising Coordinator
    Key tasks: maintain donor relations, expand ICJB fundraising efforts, send annual donor mailing, hold at least 1 fundraising campaign (online or offline)
    Experience: Fundraising background or similar
    Time commitment: 2-4 hours a week

  • Education Coordinator
    Key tasks: Continue development and execution of the Curriculum Package, Continue to build educational resources
    Experience: Curriculum background an asset, passion for education
    Time commitment: 2-4 hours a week

  • Dow Coordinator
    Key tasks: Plan shareholder protest, Track Dow Chemical in the news
    Experience: Previous experience in corporate accountability campaigns
    Time commitment: 2-4 hours a week

To apply please email justice@bhopal.net with responses to the following:

1) Why are you interested in the position(s)?
2) What skills do you bring to the position(s)?
3) What prior experience do you have with the Bhopal gas disaster and/or ICJB?

6. Support the Bhopal Campaign!

As a campaign that works on corporate accountability, we do not accept corporate funding. The Bhopalis need individual supporters like you to sustain their fight for justice. Remember that while many environmental and human rights organizations support the Bhopalis’ cause, ICJB is the only international organization that is led by the survivors and that fundraises to directly benefit the struggle as envisioned by the survivors. Because of the currency exchange value, even very small recurring amounts make a huge difference! Make a tax-deductible donation (in the U.S.) here.
 

  • Volunteer (e-mail justice@bhopal.net for more information)
    Bhopal.net needs your help! We’re looking for volunteers to help organize old posts so the site is more accessible. All you’ll need is a computer and a steady internet connection. Can you spare just one or two hours a week to help out?

  • Join our Facebook Group Here and Visit our Page Here

  • Follow us on Twitter Here.

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Call for 2015/2016 Coordinating Committee Members

In this vital 30th anniversary year, ICJB North America is looking for Coordinating Committee (CC) members. As part of the CC, you will be responsible for helping develop the campaign in North America. Below are a list of the positions we are seeking:

Website Coordinator
Key tasks: updating website content, improve interface, sending out Low DOWns,
Experience: WordPress and CIVICRM knowledge is helpful but not necessary
Time commitment: 2-4 hours a week

Fundraising Coordinator
Key tasks: maintain donor relations, expand ICJB fundraising efforts, send annual donor mailing, hold at least 1 fundraising campaign (online or offline)
Experience: Fundraising background or similar
Time commitment: 2-4 hours a week

Education Coordinator
Key tasks: Continue development and execution of the Curriculum Package, Continue to build educational resources
Experience: Curriculum background an asset, passion for education
Time commitment: 2-4 hours a week

Community Relations Coordinator
Key tasks: Develop and maintain relationships with environmental justice, environmental and social justice groups in North America.
Experience: Awareness of like-minded groups in North America; Community relations experience
Time commitment: 2-4 hours a week

Communications Coordinator
Key tasks: Drafting Press Releases, Building relationships with journalists, supporting our online mailings and online communications
Experience: Previous media (including social media) experience
Time commitment: 2-4 hours a week

Dow Coordinator
Key tasks: Plan shareholder protest, Track Dow in the news
Experience: Previous experience in corporate accountability
Time commitment: 2-4 hours a week

To apply please email justice@bhopal.net with responses to the following:
1) Why are you interested in the position(s)?
2) What skills do you bring to the position(s)?
3) Do you have previous experience on Bhopal gas disaster and/or ICJB?

To nominate someone please email justice@bhopal.net with responses to the following:
1) The name and email address of who you are nominating
2) Why you are nominating them

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“We are dying anyway – this way at least my death will make a difference” – Kamla Bai Airhwar, Indefiniate Waterless Faster Speaks

“Mother of 4 sons is considered blessed but because of the disaster I have a cursed life. I want to tell the government that we are dying anyway – this way at least my death will make a difference. I am not afraid – if I was not afraid when the poison clouds hit me, if I was not afraid of the police in the demonstrations I took part in Delhi, Bombay and other places – why should I be afraid now?”

Kamla Bai Airhwar was sleeping with her family of five — husband, one daughter and four sons. She was pregnant with her sixth child. After midnight stung by the gas she ran away carrying one of her sons Pratap who was one year and three months old. Her husband ran away holding 3 years old Malkhan. The remaining three children who were older ran away on their own. Her husband and Malkhan were taken to the District hospital. Malkhan was taken to the ward but husband was dumped in the mortuary. He crawled out of it and came back in the morning. Her husband used to stay ill ever since the disaster. He had breathlessness, cough and used to vomit blood often. Because of his illness they had to stop the business of repairing and selling shoes. Her sons have a range of illnesses that persist till today. Two of them were diagnosed with TB. One of her grandchild has a cleft lip, another has a speech disorder and a third grandchild has severe learning disability.

Kamla Bai Airhwar, Age: 70

 

Kamla Bai

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“Our neighbourhood was among the worst hit by the poisonous gas from Union Carbide.” – Indefinate Faster Kasturi Bai Speaks

“Our neighbourhood was among the worst hit by the poisonous gas from Union Carbide. Yet 91 % of residents in our neighbourhood have been categorized as only temporarily injured by the government. I am happy to be doing something to correct this terrible wrong.”

Kasturi ran through the poison clouds along with her children on the night of the disaster to reach the hospital. At the hospital she rescued one of her neighbours who she found under a pile of dead bodies. She lost one daughter on the same night.  Another daughter died recently from cancer. Her husband was a building contractor and because of his inability to work as much his income fell by 50 %. Her husband has had several attacks of paralysis and today suffers from breathlessness, burning in the chest and stomach problems. Her sons cannot go to work due to frequent illness. Two of her granddaughters have delayed milestones. She has received only 25 thousand rupees as compensation.

Kasturi Bai, Age: 65

Kasturi Bai

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