April 22nd Press Release

BHOPAL SURVIVORS ARRIVE IN THE US


Tour coincides with Bhopal Class Action appeal in New York Rashida Bee and Champa Devi Shukla, gas affected survivors and leaders of the Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Stationery Karamchari Sangh (Bhopal Gas Affected Women's Stationery Workers' Union / BGPMSKS), and Satinath Sarangi of the Bhopal Group for Information and Action arrived in Texas,
US today for a 40 day tour. As representatives and leaders of the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal, they have been invited by organisations such as the Association for India's Development and Beyond Pesticides to apprise citizens about the continuing tragedy of the 1984 Union Carbide - Bhopal gas disaster.

During their tour, Rashida Bee and Champa Devi will visit various communities affected by Dow Chemical, the new 100% owner of Union Carbide and also engage in strategic discussion with support groups to strengthen their struggle for justice. The survivors will also be confronting Dow shareholders at the company's annual shareholder meeting with Dow's pending liabilities in Bhopal, on May 8th in Midland, Michigan. Mrs. Champa Devi stated It's been two years since we first met with Dow officials in India, and in this time we've not received a single concrete proposal on how they'll address their responsibilities in
Bhopal". According to her more than hundred thousand people still suffer from the disaster. Children are still born with birth defects and tens of thousands cant earn their livelihoods due to their exposure to deadly chemicals. " So long as babies in Bhopal nurse on mothers milk that contains toxic chemicals, DOW's name will remain internationally associated with corporate injustice." Mrs Devi said. The delegation expects to raise the issues of DOWs responsibility to face trial on criminal charges, long term medical care of survivors and
their children, economic and social rehabilitation and contamination in and around the abandoned Union Carbide factory site, "It is not in DOW's interests to continue stonewalling us", Rashida Bee remarked, "as their shareholders are now well aware. DOW must act on our demands or face the consequences".

The survivors' tour coincides with the appeal of the Bhopal class action in New York and the Supreme Court of India's demand for an explanation from the government for the delay in distributing compensation money. The government is required to respond within a week.

SCHEDULE OF SURVIVORS' TOUR IN APRIL

Date Location Host
22nd-23rd Houston, TX Intl Campaign for Justice in Bhopal (ICJB)
24th-25th Seadrift, TX Calhoun County Resource Watch, Member ICJB
26th-27th Austin, TX Beyond Pesticides and Association for India's Development (AID), Austin Chapter
28th Houston South Asian Students, Rice University
29th-30th Plaquemine, Louisiana Lousiana Environmental


Action Network in May

Date Location Host
1st-5th New York  
6th-10th Ann Arbor, Midland, Detroit, Claire, MI Justice for Bhopal, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
12th-14th Boston MIT Student groups
16th-20th Washington D.C. South Asian Students, Rice University
19th Atlanta The Green Party, Campus Greens (of Georgia State U) & Labor Education, and Action Project/United Students Against Sweatshops of Georgia State U.
20th/21st Raleigh, North Carolina AID, talk by Champa Devi.
20th/21st Atlanta AID, screening of 'Bhopal
Express'
22nd Raleigh, North Carolina AID, talk by Champa Devi
22nd Washington DC ICJB, outside the American
Chemistry Council.
24th-26th Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania AID Annual Conference
26th New York ASHA, annual conference
27th Washington D.C. South Asian Students, Rice University
27th Washington DC Global Health Council, 'Safe
Motherhood' panel.
28th San Francisco AID Bay Area, Berkeley Students
Group et al.
28th-30th California Host- AID Bay Area chapter
29th Seattle. U of Washington, Washington Toxics
Coalition.
30th Flight home San Francisco > New Delhi
31st Return to India  

For more information on the tour, venue, background and bios of BGPMSKS & the survivors,
speaking engagements and interviews please contact:

Krishnaveni Gundu
US Coordinator
International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal
(Coalition of environmental & social justice organisations led by
women's survivor groups of 1984 Union Carbide gas disaster)
Tel +1 832 444 1731
Email krishnaveni_g@sbcglobal.net
www.bhopal.net

Or
Nityanand Jayaraman - Volunteer ICJB
Cell - 520 906 5216

Or
Gary Cohen
Environmental Health Fund - Member, ICJB
Tel 617 524 6018

Please check www.bhopal.net for regular updates.