15 villagers arrested at chakan near Pune agitation triggered

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New Delhi,Jul 26 (UNI)Three organisations working for Bhopal Gas victims have demanded immediate relese of 15 villagers arrested in connection with the demolition of Dow Chemeical's R &D facility at Chakan near Pune.

Dow Chemical Company(owner of Union Carbide) had encroached on village grazing land, and illegaly chopped 14,000 trees to clear the construction site.As a result, the villagers blocked road access to the site due to which the work at the site has been suspended since January 2008, a spokesperson of the Bhopla Gas Peedit Mahila Purush Sangharsh Morcha said.

"The company has been granted license to construct without requiring it to undertake any environmental impact assessment studies or submitting an environmental management programme.While the Maharastra State Government has directed that the company should perform an EIA and seek environmental clearance from the Central Government,it has extended police protection for its construction even before the company has fulfilled these conditions",he added.

Demanding immediate dropping of false criminal charges against the villagers arrested, the Bhopal survivors' organisations said that the terror let loose by the police on peaceful protestors is yet another instance of the unholy collusion between Dow Chemical and the governments of Maharashtra and India.

UNI XC SY VC1807

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