Protesters halt work at Dow Chemical centre

India Pr Wire, 19 January, 2007
New Delhi — Protestors, demanding justice for survivors of the 1984 Bhopal gas leak disaster, Saturday claimed to have brought to a halt construction work at Dow Chemical’s upcoming research and development centre in Maharashtra.
‘All construction work at Dow Chemical’s Rs.4 billion research centre in Chakhan, near Pune, was brought to a halt by local residents and farmers who have made it clear to the company that it will not be allowed to set up the centre until it addresses the issues facing the survivors of the 1984 Union Carbide disaster,’ said Shalini Sharma, an activist.
‘More than 500 women associated with the local 15-village Bhamchandragarh Bachao Warkari Farmer Sangharsh Samiti protested at the Chakhan facility,’ Sharma added.
Rachna Dhingra, another activist, said the chemical giant is now facing protests from every quarter.
‘A few days ago students of the Indian Institutes of Technology successfully petitioned their institutes to bar Dow from recruiting engineers on campus, while in 2005 public pressure led to the cancellation of a technology tie-up between Dow and Indian Oil,’ claimed Dhingra.
Dow Chemical has taken over Union Carbide. Activists from across the country have been opposing its every single move in India alleging the global chemical giant is yet to provide adequate compensation to the victims of 1984 gas leak disaster.
Protesters criticise the government for failing to pursue Dow Chemical to clean up the contaminated soil and groundwater around the factory in Bhopal.

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