"You may beat us, but we are not beaten" say survivors

CHASING AWAY SLEEP WITH DRUMS AND SONGS
May 18, 2005
Press Statement by Survivor’s organisations and supporters
Four organizations working on issues of the December ’84 Union Carbide disaster and residents of the communities affected by ground water contamination due to Union Carbide’s toxic chemical waste today condemned the Madhya Pradesh government for police brutalities on women and children taking part in a peaceful protest for a just demand.
The activists accused the state government of spreading false propaganda and expressed regret that several local newspapers demonstrated utter disregard for journalistic ethics and published one-sided and false reports of the state government and failed to represent the perspective of the demonstrators. They challenged the Madhya Pradesh government to produce just one photograph that shows the participants of the “Neend Udaao” campaign causing damage to the office of the Director, Bhopal Gas Tragedy Relief and Rehabilitation. They said that representatives of different national and local media channels who were covering the demonstration were witness to the fact that people remained non-violent throughout the demonstration.
Meanwhile, the activists have lodged a formal complaint with the National Human Rights Commission against named police officials who attacked the peaceful demonstrators, beat women, children and others with sticks and kicked them on the chest and stomach. A police complaint against these officials has also been filed.
In a large public meeting held near Union Carbide today, the residents of the communities with contaminated ground water unanimously decided to continue with the “Neend Udaao”[Chase sleep away] campaign. As part of their next series of action tomorrow they will play drums and sing songs outside the residences of officials and ministers responsible for supplying water to the affected communities as per the decision of the Supreme Court of India.
Rashida Bi, Champa Devi Shukla
Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Stationery Karmachari Sangh
Syed M Irfan,
Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Purush Sangharsh Morcha
Shahid Noor
Bhopal ki Aawaaz
Satinath Sarangi, Rachna Dhingra
Bhopal Group for Information and Action
Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Stationery Karmachari Sangh
Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Purush Sangharsh Morcha
Bhopal Group for Information and Action
Bhopal ki Aawaaz

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