Protest at shameful beating and kicking of survivors who asked politicians to obey Supreme Court order

In response to the brutal police abuse against Bhopal survivors, Amnesty International and ICJB and Greenpeace-India release two advisories. A fax alert to the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh will go out today and Amnesty will also be releasing its own appeal to the Chief Minister.
Meanwhile you can join the fax action to the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh here.
You can also help “Wake Up” the politicians to their duty by telephoning them at their homes. Details here.
Conitnue reading for coverage from the Amnesty release in the Hindustan Times.

Amnesty voices concern over Bhopal incident
Vijay Dutt
London, May 20, 2005
Amnesty International has voiced its concern at reports of alleged “excessive and unnecessary use of force against protesters by police in Bhopal on May 17, 2005. In a statement it said it had received reports of police violence at approximately 12:30 on May 17, 2005 against some 300 protestors, including women and children.
“The protestors were opposing the failure of the Madhya Pradesh state government to provide clean drinking water to the communities affected by the ongoing contamination of the former Union Carbide plant in Bhopal.”
It has called “for a prompt, impartial, thorough and transparent investigation into the incident to examine whether the use of force by police was consistent with national law and international standards including the Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms, and the Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials”.
It has also demanded that following investigations, “any officials reasonably suspected of having breached national law or international standards on the use of force should be brought to justice in proceedings which meet international standards of fairness. Those who have suffered harm as a result of excessive use of force should also be adequately compensated”.
The Amnesty, basing its information on “reliable sources”, said the protestors entered the Bhopal Gas Tragedy Relief and Rehabilitation office in Bhopal at around 11:30 am. “Reportedly no one stopped the protesters from entering the building. While in the building, they chanted slogans and beat steel plates with spoons. Police, including 15 male police officers in riot gear, reportedly arrived on the scene around 12:30 and informed the protestors that no authorities were available to speak with them.
“Then, the police allegedly removed protestors, including pushing them down stairs, kicking some women in the chest and stomach, and beating people with sticks. Seven of the protesters were reportedly arrested, charged under the Indian Penal Code and held for approximately four hours.
“The protesters were expressing concern that the May 7, 2004 directive of the Supreme Court of India to supply clean water to those communities affected by contaminated ground water from the Union Carbide factory site has not been implemented.”
Amnesty called on the Governments of India and Madhya Pradesh to fully implement the directive, ensuring a regular supply of adequate safe water for the domestic use of the affected communities.
This article appeared in the Hindustan Times.

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