Greenpeace and pollution impacted communities from Bhopal (MP), Kodaikanal(TN), Eloor(Kerala), Paradip (Orissa), Patancheru (AP) and Delhi are coming together on this World Water Day (March 22, 2005) in New Delhi for a massive public rally to renew their demand for clean water, clean air, clean-food and a toxic-free future.
Our water resources (rivers, lakes, groundwater) are poisoned irreversibly, with the chemicals showing up in breast milk and human blood. Entire eco-systems and the species dependent on them are under threat because of uncontrolled release of chemical waste and effluents in our water bodies.
Greenpeace, independent scientists and civil society groups have presented enough instances of toxic chemical pollution and its impacts on human health and our environment.
Boy drinking from contaminated stand-pipe in Bhopal
The rally will be led by the feisty women of Bhopal, survivors of the world’s worst industrial disaster, who20 years later are still battling for provision of clean drinking water. They will be joined by people from other communities campaigning against similar challenges: The Kodaikanal community, impacted by the mercury poisoning of their pristine hill forests, a sensitive water-shed area, polluted due to the malpractices at Hindustan Lever’s thermometer factory; The community of Eloor living by the river Periyar in God’s own country, marred by the environmental havoc caused by the unregulated industries of the Eloor Industrial estate; People from Patancheru, where lakes have borne the brunt of chemical poisoning from the Medak Industrial Estate; and the fisher-folks of Orissa, who are literally stuck between hell and high water, trapped between Oswal Chemicals and the
Honourable Supreme Court of India has repeatedly ordered closure of these factories and similar polluting behemoths across the country, it has even appointed a monitoring committee (SCMC) to ensure that its orders are followed and remediation measures are in place, unfortunately nothing has changed because of lack of political will and corruption in the highest offices of the state and central government.
Which is why these communities are putting out a clarion call, a challenge – Bahut ho gaya! Rhomba achhu! Khup zhal! Bahu thai gayu! – ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! TAKE ACTION NOW!
We are demanding that the Government should take immediate action and
· Shut down Polluting Factories that are violating Supreme Court’s directives on hazardous waste management
· Rehabilitate and Remediate pollution impacted workers, communities and environment.
· Invest in Clean Production practices.
· Make Corporations Accountable
· Revamp the Pollution Control Boards both at the center and the state level.
We appeal to you to join us at this rally and make it a success because we have had enough of rhetoric and we demand action.
The rally starts on the Ranjit Singh flyover (opposite World Trade Center, Intercontinental) and proceeds to Parliament Street through Connaught Place, Barakhamba Rd, Janpath and Jantar Mantar.
Participating Organisations include:
Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Stationary Karamchari Sangh, Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Purush Sangharsh Morcha, Bhopal Ki Aawaaz, Bhopal Group for Information and Action, Ponds Hindustan Lever Ltd. Ex Mercury Employees Welfare Association, Periyar Mallikarana Viruddha
Samiti, Jainikiya Vedi, Peoples’ Union for Civil Liberties, United Artists’ Association, Orissa Traditional Fishworkers Union, Samudram, Patancheru Anti Pollution Committee, Gandigudam Youth Group and other representatives from all these communities
For more details contact:
Bidhan Chandra Singh: Toxics Campaigner Greenpeace India – +91 98455 35405
Vinuta Gopal: Toxics Campaigner Greenpeace India – +91 98455 35418
Namrata Chowdhary: Media Officer Greenpeace India – +91 98108 50092
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