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Bhopal gas tragedy


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Bhopal gas tragedy

  2. 2. The Bhopal Disaster which is commonly referred to as Bhopal Gas Tragedy was a gas leak incident in India, considered one of the world’s worst industrial catastrophes. It occurred on the night of December 2-3,1984 at the Union Carbide India Limited, a pesticide plant in Bhopal , Madhya Pradesh , India. A leak of methyl isocyanate gas and other chemicals from the plant resulted in the exposure of hundreds and thousands of people.
  3. 3. UCIL was the Indian subsidiary of Union Carbide Corporation (UCC), with Indian Government controlled banks and the Indian public holding a 49.1 percent stake. It started in 1969 at the northern state of India. Phosgene, Monomethlyamine, Methyl Isocyanate (MIC) and the pesticide Carbaryl, also known as Sevin were manufactured here.
  4. 4. UCC produced carbaryl using MIC as an intermediate. After the Bhopal plant was built, other manufacturers including Bayer produced carbaryl without MIC, though at a greater manufacturing cost.
  5. 5. Methylamine (1) reacts with phosgene (2) producing methyl isocyanate (3) which reacts with 1-naphthol (4) to yield carbaryl (5) PLANT PRODUCTION PROCESS
  6. 6. According to one theory: Water leaked into tank from valves while workers were cleaning the clogged pipe which is 400 feet above it. According to theory of UCC: Water was directly introduced into tank intentionally by a worker via a missing pressure gauge . It resulted in exothermic reaction and finally to a explosion.
  7. 7. Cause Of Bhopal Disaster
  8. 8.  Use of a more dangerous pesticide manufacturing method for decreasing generation cost.  Plant location close to a densely populated area. Plant management deficiencies like :  Lack of skilled operators,  Reduction of safety management.  Insufficient maintenance and  Inadequate emergency action plans.
  9. 9. UCIL didn’t maintained safety rules....... • A pipe leaked? Don't replace it. • MIC workers needed more training. They could do with less. • The MIC tank alarms had not worked for four years. • The flare tower and the vent gas scrubber had been out of service for five months before the disaster. • To reduce energy costs, the refrigeration system was idle. The MIC was kept at 20 degrees Celsius, not the 4.5 degrees advised by the manual.
  10. 10. • The steam boiler, intended to clean the pipes, was out of action for unknown reasons. • Carbon steel valves were used at the factory, even though they corrode when exposed to acid. • According to the operators the MIC tank pressure gauge had been malfunctioning for roughly a week • UCC admitted in their own investigation report that most of the safety systems were not functioning on the night of December 3, 1984.
  11. 11. • It is estimated that total deaths are about 20,000 upto 20 years after disaster. • It is estimated 1,00,000 to 2,00,000 people have permanent injuries. • Reported symptoms are eye problems , respiratory difficulties, immune and neurological disorders, cardiac failure secondary to lung injury, birth defects among children born to affected women. Dead bodies of victims of that massacre
  12. 12. Medical staff were unprepared for the thousands of casualties. Doctors and hospitals were not informed of proper treatment methods for MIC gas inhalation. They were told to simply give cough medicine and eye drops to their patients. The gases immediately caused visible damage to the trees. Within a few days, all the leaves fell off. 2,000 bloated animal carcasses had to be disposed of. "Operation Faith": On December 16, the tanks 611 and 619 were emptied of the remaining MIC. This led to a second mass evacuation from Bhopal.
  13. 13.  Immediate relief was decided two days after the tragedy.  Relief measures commenced in 1985 when food was distributed for a short period and ration cards were distributed.  Widow pension of the rate of Rs 200/per month (later Rs 750) was provided.  One-time ex-gratia payment of Rs 1,500 to families with monthly income Rs 500 or less was decided.  2,486 flats in two- and four-story buildings were constructed in the "Widows colony" outside Bhopal. The water did not reach the upper floors. It was not possible to keep cattle. Infrastructure like buses, schools, etc. were missing for at least a decade.
  14. 14.  Indian government closed plant to outsiders and failed in making the data public.  The Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) were forbidden to publish their data on health effects until after 1994  The Indian Government and UCC deny permanent injuries were caused by MIC  UCIL paid a token of $470 million even though asked a total compensation of $3.3billion.But the government said nothing  The government sent safely Mr. Anderson the CEO of UCIL at the time of massacre, to US  Civil and criminal cases are still pending in United States District Court, Manhattan and the District Court of Bhopal, India, involving UCC, UCIL employees, and Warren Anderson
  15. 15. CONTRIBUTING FACTORS OF THE DISASTER • Faulty Location • Inadequate safety equipment • Shoddy Maintainance • Human Error • Inadequate Staffing • Lack of Evacuation Plans
  16. 16. PREVIOUS WARNINGS & ACCIDENTS • 1981- One worker dies after being exposed to phosgene gas • 1982- 24 workers exposed to phosgene • 1982- Engineer burned by MIC • October 1982: An Operator trying to fix leak in valve received severe burns.
  17. 17. Learning Lessons • Reduce Inventory of Hazardous material • Keep all the safety related equipment in order • Keep Residential areas away from the plant • Proper Management • Emergency Training • Community awareness
  19. 19. BHOPAL GAS VICTIMS USED AS GUINEA PIGS FOR DRUG TRIALS' • The health ministry listed three instances of norms being flouted: • * Inspection in 2010 on clinical trial of Telavancin by Quintiles Ltd: "Finding of the inspection of one clinical trial conducted at BMHRC showed some deficiencies like non-payment of compensation to the trial subjects for participation and non-reporting of serious adverse events within prescribed time limit." The company was merely warned by Drug Controller General (DCG). • * Inspection in 2011 on clinical trial of Tigecycline by Quintiles Research Pvt Ltd: Finding of the inspection showed deficiencies like non-payment of compensation to trial subjects and non-reporting of serious adverse events in time. Again, the pharmaceutical firm was only warned in March 2012. • * Inspection in 2011 on clinical trial of Fondaparinux by Sanofi-Synthelabo Ltd resulted in identical findings - non-payment of compensation to subjects and non-reporting of serious adverse events and the DCG had again issued only a warning in March 2012.
  20. 20. • From these three instances, it was clear that the pharmaceutical firms were not paying the mandatory compensation due to Bhopal gas disaster survivors, who had volunteered to be subjects in the clinical trial of new drugs and formulations. • The health ministry said of the 157 new drugs/formulations by global pharmaceutical firms which were directed to be re-evaluated by the apex court, the technical committee (TC) had evaluated 50 cases. • the details, the TC recommended the continuance of these 50 clinical trials as they met all the relevant aspects of safety and efficacy," the ministry said. A bench of Justices RM Lodha and SK Singh posted the matter for further hearing in February.
  21. 21. BHOPAL GAS TRAGEDY: US SHOULD EXTRADITE ANDERSON, SAYS NGO • Bhopal: In the wake of arrest of Indian diplomat Devyani Khobragade, an NGO working for the cause of victims of 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy yesterday demanded that the US should extradite Warren Anderson, former chairman of the Union Carbide Corporation. Anderson is the prime accused in the Bhopal gas leak case. Abdul Jabbar, convener of Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Udyog Sanghatan, said India should learn from the US government which was sticking to its guns even after giving humiliating treatment to Indian Deputy Consul General Devyani Khobragade on trivial charges. “On the other hand, our government not only released Anderson, the prime accused in Bhopal gas case (in 1984), but also apologised for arresting him here at the time,” Jabbar said, speaking at a protest organised by gas tragedy victims here. Local court has declared Anderson as an absconder and an arrest warrant was pending against him since March 1992, he pointed out, saying that the Centre did not bring him to the country on the pretext that it would jeopardise the relations between the two countries and hit the foreign investment. The gas tragedy victims burnt effigies of US and Indian governments at the Yaadgar-e-Shahjahani Park in old city area here in protest over Anderson issue. 22.12.13
  22. 22. BHOPAL GAS VICTIMS ALLEGE SCAM OF RS 25 CRORE IN REHABILITATION FUND • Bhopal: At a press conference today, five organizations of survivors of the Union Carbide disaster in Bhopal presented details of corruption of over 20 Crores by the Bhopal Gas Tragedy Relief & Rehabilitation Department of the Government of Madhya Pradesh in providing economic rehabilitation to the survivors. These details were exposed through documents made available under the RTI Act. • According to the complaint filed with the Joint Director Anti-Corruption, Central Bureau of Investigation, by the survivors’ organizations, more than 94 % of the payments made by Bhopal Gas Tragedy Relief & Rehabilitation Department, Government of Madhya Pradesh to the training agencies were fraudulent payments. These payments were made for trainees who did not complete their training or were not placed in any job by the training agencies. • The allegations against the department were based on information gathered from 380 persons claimed to have been trained under the economic rehabilitation scheme. The organizations have also complained to the CBI that close to a fourth of the names of the beneficiaries of the economic rehabilitation scheme are false, more than half of the letters offering jobs to the trainees were forged and only 6 % of the trainees received the stipend due to them.
  23. 23. • The organizations said that as per the decision of the Group of Ministers on Bhopal in June, 2010, an amount of Rs. 104 Crores was transferred to the Bhopal Gas Tragedy Relief & Rehabilitation Department by the central government for economic rehabilitation of the survivors. Out of this amount, between June 2011 and October 2013, Rs. 26 Crores have been paid to 22 training agencies by the Bhopal Gas Tragedy Relief & Rehabilitation Department for providing training through 133 vocational courses to survivors of the Union Carbide disaster in Bhopal and their families. • The organizations including Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Stationery Karmchari Sangh, Bhopal Gas Peedit Nirashrit Pensionbhogi Sangharsh Morcha, Bhopal Gas Peedit Mahila Purush Sangharsh Morcha, Children Against Dow / Carbide and Bhopal Group for Information & Action condemned the Bhopal Gas Tragedy Relief & Rehabilitation Department for its failure in providing economic rehabilitation and misappropriation of funds meant for the survivors of the Bhopal disaster.