Bhopal in New Orleans!!

On March 1st, 2005 a group of AID (Association for India’s Development) Volunteers from New Orleans Chapter demonstrated non-violent, peaceful protest against DOW Chemicals Co. urging them to take the responsibility to clean up Bhopal from the after effects of Bhopal Gas tragedy that had occurred 20 years ago in India. A representative from Dow Chemical Co.Mr. Ruiz was speaking at the 2nd Annual Conference on Global Trends in Plastic Packaging Films in New Orleans on March 1st, 2005. On realizing that a Dow Chemical Representative was going to speak at a conference in town, they jumped to grab this opportunity to show their contribution for all those who have been affected by Bhopal Gas Tragedy.The group mainly consisted of Biswanath Gouda, Dharmendra Patel and Prashanth Talkad. Biswanath and Dharmendra are working as full time research consultants in New Orleans where as Prashanth is a busy graduate student at Tulane School of Engeneering working on his Ph.D. Inspite of being busy in their work schedules, they choose to take time off in the middle of the week from work to form a responsible group to voice their feelings for their countrymen who are still experiencing the ill effects of the tragedy.
They were not welcomed at the venue by greetings!! They were asked to leave the premises as the organizers felt it was not the right forum to address the issue, although they felt it was a noble cause. This was an expected response for the group. So these people had to leave the premises but they achieved in putting up posters outside main entrance of Hilton Hotel. They did receive attention from passer by and other people walking in and out from the hotel. They held the posters for an hour which coincided around the time Mr.Ruiz was making his presentation from Dow Chemical Co.
Under the guidance of Chapter President, Biswanath Gouda AID-New Orleans had also organized a candle light vigil in December, 2004 in Uptown Campus of Tulane University to commemorate 20 years of Bhopal Tragedy which was received with much local attention. AID-New Orleans have also received approval to hold a photo exhibition on Bhopal Gas Tragedy in Dec.2005 at Caroll Art Gallery in Tulane University, New Orleans.

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