If the number of lives existing in this world is fixed, I wonder who’s life I have been given. My birth is certainly not related to the accident in Bhopal in 1984. However, I couldn’t ignore the fact that thousands of lives had lost in the same year.
On the night of December 2nd 1984, methyl isocyanate gas and the highly toxic substances leaked from Union Carbide India Ltd. (a subsidiary of the American firm Union Carbide Corporation) pesticide plant in the city of Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh state in Central India.
Unfortunately, the gas cloud was trapped under a temperature inversion (a deviation from the normal change of an atmospheric property with altitude) on the night, therefore, it killed over 2000 residents around the plant during the night. In addition, 150,000 to 300,000 people are affected by the incident though the reported number of the victims differs according to organizations. The government reported that the additional 1500 people had died a few months after the incident and the final death toll was estimated to be 15,000 to 20,000.
Many of the inhabitants are still suffered from chronic health problems such as cancer, neuropathy, dermatosis and respiratory diseases. The number of the patients has gradually increased from 1000 and it now reached about 55,000. The government didn’t clean the site properly so tons of industrial waste soaked into the ground, which resulted soil and water contamination. The area has high instances of birth defects such as psychiatric disorder and developmental disorder and most of them are unable to afford a normal standard of living.
Just by the area, there is a medical institution called Sambhvna Trust Clinic, and they offer a variety of supports to the sufferers. There are around 200 people visiting the clinic everyday and 10 of them are the new patients. Over 30,000 people are still living in this particular area. Some of them are those who had experienced the incident, however, every time I visit the town, I discover the news of their deaths. In contradiction to such human affairs, plants grow thickly and are covering the site.
As if time gradually erases truth no matter how tragic the incident is, Bhopal tragedy is fading.