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2013 Mission Statement

ICJB-NA Advisory Board

Mission Statement 2013

The International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal, North America (ICJB-NA) is the North American branch of an international solidarity network of students, professionals, and activists (environmental, social justice, human rights and more) that was set up to address the grave injustices suffered by half a million Bhopalis. Using education, grassroots organizing, and non-violent direct action, ICJB-NA works to hold Dow Chemical and the Indian Government accountable for the ongoing chemical disaster in Bhopal. Through empowering and advising campaigners in this worldwide movement, ICJB-NA strives to further the Bhopalis’ demands for justice, appropriate monetary compensation, and remediation of the abandoned factory site.

Our Vision

  • The ICJB North American Advisory Board (AB) stands by the campaign slogan, “We all live in Bhopal”. By this, we mean that, in a world in which corporations operate with impunity, the chemical tragedy that happened in Bhopal could happen, and in fact is happening, even in our own communities and work-places. The AB strives to educate the world of this fact by carrying the story of Bhopal and its survivors into the global consciousness, in an effort to inspire action and change.

  • The AB is responsible to two communities: The Survivors themselves of the continuing Bhopal Disaster in India, and the community of activists in North America (NA) working for justice on behalf of those Survivors.

  • The AB creates and implements campaign strategies and actions throughout NA designed to further the demands and goals of the Survivors. These two main goals are:

    1. Remediation of environmental damage caused by the abandoned factory.

    2. Adequate monetary compensation and medical care for the victims of the disaster, including second and third generation children born with contamination-related congenital birth defects.

The AB seeks to bring about these goals by putting pressure on Dow Chemical and the Indian

Government, the entities liable for the disaster as well as for monetary compensation and

environmental remediation.  

  • The AB uses a variety of methods to achieve its goals, including non-violent direct action, media outreach and education.

  • The AB fundraises in an effort to provide resources not only for Survivors, but also for North American supporters of the Survivors who wish to take action in their own communities and universities

  • The AB works in solidarity with other communities affected by Dow Chemical and other incidences of gross corporate negligence.

  • AB campaigns to increase corporate accountability in North America and abroad through public awareness of the Bhopal disaster.

  • The AB fights for a toxic-free future for all.

We all live in Bhopal.

WHO WE ARE

The AB is currently comprised of 8 volunteers representing activists across NA. Volunteer AB Members serve 1-year terms and are vetted and approved by ICJB leaders around the world. The AB is fortunate to be a diverse, dedicated and passionate group of people. Our commitment to transparency and equality in decision-making helps us function sustainably. Having direct lines of accountability to Bhopal survivors is key to our success. To communicate with our supporters, we use email, regular e-newsletters, and social media. Currently our email list includes 5,000 supporters. Our annual N.A. conference creates a crucial face-to-face engagement opportunity. Please click here to join our mailing list!

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Interview with Photographer Alex Masi, Winner of 2012 FotoEvidence Book Award

ICJB would like to recognise the achievement of Alex Masi, the winner if the 2012 FotoEvidence Book Award, who spent a considerable amount of time in Bhopal documenting the lives of the victims of the disaster. The culmination of his efforts is the publication of his book, “Bhopal Second Disaster”, to be launched on the 26th of August, 2012, at VII Gallery in Dumbo, NY. We caught up with Alex to talk to him about his work in Bhopal.

ICJB: How did you learn about the Bhopal campaign and what made you want to center your work on it?

AM: In January 2008, I traveled to India to visit some of the country’s most polluted places to collect images on various issues affecting society’s poorest and under-represented people. My topics ranged from extreme poverty to industrial hazards, from child labor to rural life, from water contamination to birth defects, and urban slum dwellers.

I first visited Bhopal in April 2009. After learning more about the disaster, I decided to begin documenting what I call the ‘Second Disaster’ – the water pollution affecting the residents living near the abandoned industrial site of Union Carbide (Image inset), and its effects on children.

ICJB: Could you tell us a little bit about your book –“Bhopal Second disaster”    which is to be launched in October?

AM: The book is the result of the 2012 FotoEvidence Book Award. It   showcases many of my images documenting the problem of water pollution, the activities of Sambhavna Trust and Chingari Rehabilitation Center, as well as daily life in Bhopal, 27 years after the disaster.

In addition to the images it includes an interview where I talk about my long-term project and a foreword written by Indra Sinha, the illustrious author of ‘Animal’s People’, a touching novel focusing on Bhopal – shortlisted for the prestigious 2007 Man Booker Prize.

‘Bhopal Second Disaster’ will be sold through FotoEvidence, its publisher, after its launch on August 26, 2012 in the VII Gallery in Dumbo, New York, with an exhibition of my work together with 4 other finalists. The book will initially be released as a hard cover (12×8 inches) and later on in an Ipad version.

To stay tuned as the exhibition and on the book launch, connect to my Facebook Page

ICJB: What impact do you anticipate the book will have?

AM: While producing my long-term photographic work in Bhopal, I strove to portray my subjects with intimacy, meaning and depth. I wanted to convey emotions, to stimulate our deeper and most innate feelings, our senses of justice, compassion and brotherhood, in the hope of becoming an active catalyst for the promotion of awareness, action and change for the people of Bhopal.

I sincerely believe that publishing my collection of images from Bhopal in this book: ‘Bhopal Second Disaster’, will allow me to reach, inform and engage a larger public than ever before, in positive and proactive ways.

I believe that photography is a powerful tool to inform and challenge the audience on a personal, intimate level. Images can foster direct action by passionate and committed individuals, as well as by governments, policy-makers, groups and organisations. 

 

ICJB: Your next project is your own charity – “A better tomorrow”. Could you tell me a little bit about that?

AMThat’s true, I am in the process of registering ‘A Better Tomorrow‘ as a ‘Small Charity‘ in the United Kingdom – attracting funds not exceeding a total of 5000 UK£ per year, before being able to apply to The Charity Commission for England and Wales, and become an official Charity.

In April 2011, The Photographers Giving Back Awards, based in Sweden, offered me a grant of 5000 USD, entirely aimed for the creation and implementation of a plan benefitting Poonam, and to also help her family overcome extreme poverty.

A collection of ‘Limited Edition Art Prints’, ‘Open Edition Prints’ and donations, will fund Poonam, Jyoti, and Ravi’s education until Year 12, and beyond to college, as well as a number of socio-educational initiatives for the children living in Oriya Basti, and in the other water-affected colonies of Bhopal.

My local initiatives will focus mainly on the education (and training) of needy children living in the water-affected colonies of Bhopal. In the beginning, this will be carried out by commissioning small, specific projects to a trusted NGO in Bhopal. I am in talks with The Bhopal Medical Appeal to understand whether Chingari Trust could take on such collaborative role.

‘A Better Tomorrow’ is therefore a small personal initiative, which I wanted to make official, presenting a modern approach where I will be able to give something back, as a photographer, by selling my own prints from this city, in order to help my subjects in a more direct way.

 

*All the images published with this interview are copyrighted to Alex Masi.

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Position Opening with ICJB-NA

International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal (North America)
Position: Administration and Government Relations Officer
Location: Washington D.C., United States or D.C. Metro Area
Contract Term:  12 months (June 1 2012 – May 31 2013)  Hours/week: 25-30hrs
Salary: $20/hr
Website: www.studentsforbhopal.org
Submit resume to icjb.us.ab@gmail.com by May 15, 2012

About ICJB:
The International Campaign for Justice for Bhopal (ICJB) is a coalition of Bhopal gas disaster survivors groups and the environmental, social justice, progressive Indian, and human rights groups that have joined forces to support them. ICJB works to hold the Indian Government and Dow Chemical Corporation accountable for the ongoing chemical disaster in Bhopal, India. It was set up to address the grave injustices suffered by the half million Bhopal Gas Disaster survivors.

Students for Bhopal and ICJB North America  is a regional solidarity network of students, professionals, activists, and partners. We use education, grassroots organizing and non-violent direct action to pressure Dow Chemical and the Indian Government to uphold the Bhopalis’ demand for justice, and their fundamental human right to live free of chronic chemical poisoning. SfB/ICJB work directly to improve the condition of Bhopal’s survivors. Our role is to empower and train leaders in the worldwide movement to end this crime against humanity.
JOB DESCRIPTION:

Government Relations: The candidate will champion the cause of ICJB by creating and maintaining relationships with Congress and Senate. The job will involve building support for the organization, identifying congressmen sympathetic to the cause, rallying support for actions in the US and in India, educating senators about the cause, and rallying support for the ongoing court cases in the United States. They will also be expected to contribute creative ideas towards growing the capacity of the campaign in relation to the US Government and citizens.
Administration: The candidate will be responsible for writing proposals for both unrestricted operating revenue and restricted grants. Fundraising will be a major component of their work. They will also be in charge of submitting timely and accurate reports for all existing grant funded projects. They must comply with all grant reporting as required by foundation/corporate donors. They will also be involved in coordination and communication between diverse supporters and sub-groups of the campaign, and may be asked to provide logistical or creative support for actions, events or conferences to the ICJB volunteer groups.

The candidate will report to the ICJB North America Advisory Board.

QUALIFICATIONS

The successful candidate will possess at minimum an undergraduate degree in any of the related fields (political science, international relations, environmental studies etc.), a post graduate degree in Fundraising Management or Public Policy, or relevant employment experience in fundraising or campaigning.

The candidate should have experience in grant writing, and prior knowledge about the Bhopal Gas Disaster or related campaign will be beneficial. At minimum the candidate should be passionate about environmental issues.

This position requires excellent interpersonal and relationship-building skills to work effectively with a variety of individuals and political organizations.

This needs to be combined with excellent organizational, time management and planning skills in order to efficiently manage multiple priorities with the flexibility to adapt to changing demands and circumstances on short notice. The candidate should also be experienced with working independently.

APPLICATION

Applicants are invited to submit a resume and cover letter by emailing icjb.us.ab@gmail.com by Tuesday May 15th, 2012.

We appreciate all applications received. Candidates will receive a response by May 22nd 2012 through email. The interviews will be conducted on the phone (or in person if it can be arranged).

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Jerome Mouffe Holds Concert for Bhopal

On February 24th guitar virtuoso Jerome Mouffe played a classical concert in support of the Bhopal survivors and campaigners for justice to a packed house at the Little Krege Auditorium at MIT. The concert was entitled, “Spirit in Motion”. Pieces covered were by :

  • Isaac Albeniz
  • Agustin Barrios
  • Mario Castelnuevo-Tedesco
  • Astor Piazzolla
  • Giulio Regondi

Facebook Event Page: http://www.facebook.com/events/295239190533262/

Visit http://www.jeromemouffe.net for more information about the artist

Youtube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nl94Q0jHVS8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3W404dA51OY

 

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Survivors call for immediate withdrawal of false charges

Press Statement – FOR DETAILS OF CHARGES SEE LINKS AT THE END OF PRESS RELEASE
January 16, 2012
Five organizations of survivors of the Union Carbide today held a demonstration today calling for immediate withdrawal of criminal cases against 35 named and 2000 unnamed gas victims in connection with their protests action on December 3, 2011. The organizations demanded immediate release of 14 persons who are in jail for the last one and half month and setting up of an independent inquiry by the government before taking any penal action.

“The Chief Minister is yet to keep his publicly stated promise of setting up an independent inquiry in to the incident of violence on the 27th anniversary of the gas disaster and innocent people are being punished without trial. It is supremely ironical that those fighting against the crimes of Union Carbide and Dow Chemical are put in jail while the perpetrators of the massacre in Bhopal remain unpunished for the last 27 years” said Rashida Bee, President of the Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Stationery Karmachari Sangh.

Balkrishna Namdeo president of the Bhopal Gas Peedit Nirashrit Pension Bhogi Sangharsh Morcha who is himself accused of murderous assault and other grave offences pointed out that several women older than 80 years and with severe health problems have been named in the First Information Report as participating in violence using swords and country made guns.

“The videos and photographs produced by the police officials establish my presence 4 kilometers away from the scene of violence during, before and after the entire incident and yet I am charged under Section 307 and 16 other sections of the Indian Penal Code” said Nawab Khan, President of the Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Purush Sangharsh Morcha.

Satinath Sarangi of the Bhopal Group for Information and Action pointed out that the District and police administration have failed to respond to the questions raised by the State Human Rights Commission immediately after the incident of violence. “False charges have been leveled against 2000 gas victims to cover up police brutalities on peaceful women protestors that triggered the violence. The facts can only be established through an independent inquiry.” he said. He said that 6 of the 14 persons in jail for last one and half month had documentary evidence to show that they were at their workplace before and during the incident of violence.

17 year old Safreen Khan, a member of the Children against Dow Carbide who is also charged with attempt to murder and other serious offences said that the Bhopal survivors remain undaunted by the false criminal charges and are continuing with their dharna for the last 15 days.

Rashida Bi, Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Stationery Karmchari Sangh

94256 88215

Nawab Khan, Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Purush Sangharsh Morcha

9302792493

Balkrishna Namdeo, Bhopal Gas Peedit Nirashrit Pension Bhogi Sangharsh Morcha

Satinath Sarangi, Rachna Dhingra, Bhopal Group for Information and Action

9826167369

Safreen Khan, Children Against Dow Carbide

Please revisit www.bhopal.net for more information on the Campaign for Justice in Bhopal.

 

FOR DETAILS, SEE THE LINKS BELOW:

timeline for rail roko

SHRC complaint on violations of rights of accused

List of arrested with details

FIR of Aishbag Police Station for Rail Roko

FIR Jehangirabad

Details of Criminal Charges

 

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