Jun 28 2012

Navin Shah in ‘Drop Dow Now’ Standoff

Navin Shah, London Assembly Member for Brent and Harrow, has been out enjoying the sunshine today, probably whilst you and I were stuck indoors. He’s obviously a busy man, what with his London Assembly job, and his job-on-the-side as well to deal with.

He’s joined up with the ‘Drop Dow Now’ campaign group, to try to get LOCOG – the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games – to drop Dow’s sponsorship of the game due to Dow’s connections to the Bhopal gas disaster in 1984. The disaster killed over 20,000 and caused injury and illness to thousands more. Dow bought Union Carbide, the company which owned the site in Bhopal when the gas leak occurred, in 2001.

That’s right: they’re blaming Dow for something a company they bought did 17 years previously.

Colin Toogood from the Bhopal Medical Appeal said, “Everybody knows that Dow did not own the Bhopal factory at the time of the disaster. But this does not stop them from being responsible now. There is a criminal case still open against Union Carbide (UCC) for ‘culpable homicide’, and Dow refuses to present UCC in court. Dow is harbouring a fugitive from the law and preventing justice being done in Bhopal. Worse than that, while the legal process is stalled, people in Bhopal continue to be poisoned by toxic chemicals. Dow Chemical has both the power and the responsibility to stop this from happening.”

A spokesman for LOCOG said Dow was appointed following a “thorough and competitive procurement process” and that they “assessed all bids on the ability to deliver a sustainable solution and Dow met this criteria by some distance. Dow is a financially sound, well run international company with over 700 employees across 14 sites in the UK and has been a worldwide sponsor of the Olympic movement since 2010.”


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