Support Bhopal Campaigners!
I have reported before on the campaign by survivors of the disaster at Bhopal in India, including their recent march. The campaign has now entered a new stage with a hunger strike.
This week campaigners were subject to vicious treatment by security forces, as detailed in this action alert -
BHOPALIS BEATEN UP IN POLICE STATION
9 JUNE 2008. 11 a.m.
Plainclothes policemen and women and some uniformed police today beat up Bhopal survivors and their children inside the parliament street police station.
16 year old Imran was belted by policemen, including Yad Ram, a uniformed policeman from the Parliament Street police station. The belting has hurt his eye, and he has been taken to the hospital. Other policepersons whose names are known include Suraj Bhan, Mallik (a tall, big-set cop), Mahendra (in plainclothes), and the gun-toting Yad Ram.
27-year old Vikas was set upon by 13 policemen. Irshad, 20, was also beaten up badly. The police did not spare the kids. The youngest padayatri, 11-year old Yasmin, 6-year old Nagma, and 24-year old Meera More were also beaten by the police when they tried to prevent the police from dragging Rachna Dhingra, a padayatri, into the lock-up. Seeing the girls come in aid of Rachna, Plainclothesman Mahendra Singh screamed: "In Kaaliyon ke kapde fado." (*Tear the clothes off these blackies).*
All the while, the older women were forced into police lock-up.
Since the time that they were picked up from the Prime Minister's Office for demonstrating in a high-security area, senior police officials have talked tough. Callers who spoke to Mr. Nand Mohan, Deputy Commissioner of Police said the top cop said the Bhopalis will have to face the consequences this time. The Prime Minister's silence on the matter of demands has prompted the Bhopalis to protest in front of his house two times.
Mr. Muthukumaran, Director of Public Relations, Prime Minister's Office did not know that Bhopalis were being beaten up at the parliament street police station for a mistake of his boss, the Prime Minister. However, when intimated about it, he said: "I have heard about it. It is shameful. I have informed the authorities, and we'll see what can be done."
This is not a matter about a few angry policemen. The policemen had nothing to be angry about the Bhopalis. The rot spreads far higher.
With nine Bhopalis, including two women (Rachna and Meera) who are to go on a hunger strike tomorrow, please begin a neend udao.
Call the below people, and demand that a full-blown enquiry affixingresponsibility for today's deplorable incident is conducted:
Deputy Commissioner of Police Nand Mohan: +91 9818099041
Assistant Commissioner of Police Gurdeep Singh: +91 981033880
SHO Avinash Diwedi +91 9810046832
Muthukumaran. Director, Public Relations, PMO: +91 9871990019
for more information, visit www.bhopal.net
International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal
In Britain protests are being directed to the High Commission of India in London -
We are asking people to protest about the beating, arrest and detention of vulnerable children, women and men protesters which started on 9 June, to the High Commission of India in London:
High Commissioner Shiv Shankar Mukherjee
High Commission of India
Tel: 020 7836 8484