Central Pollution Control Board accused of failure to keep the June 4 deadline
Environmentalists have accused the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) of failure to keep the June 4 deadline for filing a report on groundwater contamination caused by Dow Chemical Company’s Union Carbide Corporation plant in Bhopal despite its assurances and the need for compliance with the Supreme Court Orders dated March 28 and April 19, 2012.(In one of the world’s industrial catastrophes, thousands of people died and were injured following the leak of toxic methyl isocyanate at the UCIL pesticide plant on the night of December 2-3, 1984.)
“There is no reason for the CPCB to hold back or delay filing a report on contaminated groundwater in Arif Nagar,” said environmentalist Gopal Krishna. The report “will reveal the status of the adverse impact of the industrial disaster”.
In a letter to CPCB Chairperson Mira Mehrishi, Toxics Watch Alliance (TWA), a non-government organisation, has reminded the board of the need for filing the report on contamination of groundwater near the plant area. After rains, the test results of the samples will not be credible due to dilution, TWA has said.
In its April 19 order, the Supreme Court gave the CPCB time till June 4 to file its composite report by June 4. It was also directed to file a report on removal of contamination of groundwater in the area where the Union Carbide plant is situated. But no report has been filed, said Mr. Krishna.The TWA letter noted: “So far, all the public institutions have failed to come to the rescue of the victims of the environmental and public health disaster. We urge the Board to resist all undue influences which may be working to make sure that this report on the contamination of groundwater isn’t filed in time.”