Outrage in India over Bhopal disaster verdicts

17/06/2010 10:40
Indian newspapers vented outrage Tuesday at the two-year prison terms handed down toMoncler women Vest Jackets the local managers of the company blamed for the 1984 Bhopal gas leak disaster that left thousands dead. Most focused on the 25-year delay in theMoncler T-shirt on sale convictions, the perceived leniency of the sentences and the feeling that the "big fish" -- the chief executive of the US parent group Union Carbide -- had got away. Seven Indian managers fromMoncler Jackets on sale the pesticide factory that caused the world's worst industrial accident were found guilty in a court in Bhopal on Monday and setenced to two years in jail. They were all granted bail and will now begin what promises to beMoncler Vest Jackets on sale a lengthy appeal process. "Shame On India" headlined the tabloid Mail Today, while the front page of The Times of India read: "Justice Delayed, Denied." The Express, The Times and NDTV news channel focused onair jordan the "man who got away" -- Union Carbide's then-chief executive Warren Anderson, who fled India after the disaster and was named as an absconder by the court. The ageing former executive lives inair jordan shoes suburban New York, and the Hindustan Times blamed the Indian government for allowing him "to live a life of ease far away in the US while the victims struggle from day to day". Amnesty International's global issues director Audrey Gaughran said "the Indian employees have now been tried and convicted, (but) the foreign accused have been able to evade justice simply by remaining abroad". The prosecution argued in the Bhopal court that there were design defects inAir Max the factory as well as other criminally negligent operational practices that were known to management but ignored for commercial reasons. Dow Chemical bought Union Carbide in 1999 and says all liabilities related to the accident were cleared in a 470-million-dollar settlement reached out of court with India's government in 1989. In a statement Monday, the company said the appropriate people had faced trial, arguing that US executives were not involved in the day-to-day running of the majority-owned Union Carbide India Ltd. The two-year sentences were the maximum that could be imposed afterAir Max shoes the Supreme Court in 1996 reduced the charges from culpable homicide to negligence, but many survivors said the guilty should be hanged. "We hope that this verdict today helps toNike Shox Shoes bring some closure to the victims and their families," Robert Blake, the US assistant secretary of state for South Asia, told reporters in Washington. "But I don't expect this verdict to reopen any new inquiries or anything like that." The disaster was unleashed on December 3, 1984 when a lethal plume of gas escaped from a storage tank at the Union Carbide pesticide factory, killing thousands in the surrounding slums and residential area. Government figures put the death toll at 3,500 within three days ofair shox the leak, but independent data from the state-run Indian Council of Medical Research puts the figure at between 8,000 and 10,000 in the same period. The ICMR has said that up to 1994, 25,000 people also died from the consequences of gas exposure, and victims groups say many are still suffering the effects to this day. After the verdicts, others saw repercussions for controversial legislation that the ruling Congress-led government is trying to pass to limit the liabilities of US nuclear firms operating in India. The Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage Bill would put a 110-million-dollar cap on compensation that reactor operators would have to pay and exempt equipment suppliers in the event of an accident. The measure is key to putting into operation a 2008 civilian nuclear agreement with the United States that will give India access to US nuclear technology. "There is a need to take note of the lessons learnt (from the Bhopal case) while looking at (issues such as) investigation, liability, compensation and punishment," Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily said, The Hindu newspaper reported.Lebron James shoes Kevin Garnett shoes MBT Shoes MBT Chapa MBT Mens Chapa