Bhopal: The book “Bhopal Disaster 36 Years” by Lalit Shastri, Editor-in-Chief of Newsroom24x7 was launched today marking the 36th Anniversary of the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy caused by the massive leak of the most lethal Methyl isocyanate (MIC) gas from the Union Carbide pesticide plant.
The gas disaster has left in its wake over 20,000 dead and more than 500,000 injured and wounded with irreversible lung damage. People were blinded and the immune system of countless citizens was adversely affected and there is no count of those who have been crippled for successive generations.
Bhopal Disaster 36 Years can be ordered online on Amazon
Shastri’s latest book tells in great detail how thirty-six years have passed since the midnight of December 2 and 3, 1984 when tons of deadly MIC leaked into the air from the local Union Carbide pesticide plant killing thousands of citizens and critically wounding hundreds of thousands. Bhopal that night had turned into a gas chamber; and it also gives a detailed account of each and every player involved and how the multinational company Union Carbide Corporation was allowed to get away with what Bhopal citizens call “mass murder” – a charge that eventually got reduced to death by “negligence” and “culpable homicide” not amounting to murder. None of the culprits, directly or indirectly, responsible for causing the Bhopal disaster have received the punishment they deserve. The former Chairman of the US Multinational company Union Carbide Corporation Warren Anderson, who was the principal accused and was declared an absconder in the criminal case linked with 1984 Union Carbide gas disaster is now dead.
Shastri has worked as State Correspondent for The Hindu and The Asian Age between 1991 and 2014. He has been a Consultant with UNICEF and Public Relations Officer for the Indian Red Cross Medical Relief Gas Victims’ Project (1987). Bhopal Disaster 36 years is a sequel to his earlier book Bhopal Disaster -An Eye Witness Account.
Shastri was also one of the first few to write a book on Bhopal gas tragedy titled “Bhopal Disaster – An Eyewitness Account”. This book, launched by the then President of India Gyani Zail Singh in Rashtrapati Bhawan in 1986, was a result of extensive survey in the gas affected areas, interviews of doctors, scientists, Union Carbide managers and employees, gas affected citizens, important functionaries of ILO and WHO headquarters in Geneva, attorneys in the USA and a ground level assessment of the Union Carbide Plant and its safety system in Institute, West Virginia, USA within a year of the gas disaster.