Bhopal, India Chemical Accident, 1984

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Just after midnight on December 3, 1984, a pesticide plant in Bhopal, India had a chemical leak accident. The chemical that was released into the air is called methyl isocyanate, or MIC, used to make pesticides. This chemical is tremendously harmful and fatal to humans, livestock, and crops. Only a short-term exposure may cause death or unfavorable health effects. The slums of Bhopal and its residents that surrounded the plant which were mostly affected by the gas suffered dearly. An estimated 8,000 people dead and about 300,000 more suffering from its effects. Bloated carcasses of cattle dotted the streets. Tree and plant leaves were yellow and brittle. "Corpses littered the streets and discovered behind locked doors, trapped in private death tombs" (Diamond 8). These victims had no warning what so ever. As families ran from their homes and away from the plant, they had no idea that the wind was carrying the gas cloud in the direction that they were traveling. The disaster effects on survivors are so great that the effects on generations to come are going to be serious and enduring. This could all have been avoided, if negligence and inattention didn't play a role in the Bhopal disaster of 1984.

Bhopal is the capital of the state of Madhya Pradesh, which is located in India. Climate there varies from tropical heat to near-arctic cold. With fifty-five million people the average income is very low for most people in India. "This huge population means that much of India does not have the resources to meet the daily needs of its people. As a result, most of the country is plagued by desperate poverty" (10). The city of Bhopal is spread out randomly in the midst of gently sloping hills and valleys. South of the city are two lakes that supply Bhopal's water.

The city is outrageously crowded; taxis and horse pulled carts transport crowds of commuters. "Motorcycles and bicycles carry entire families. Cage-carts, drawn by bicycles, are crammed with schoolchildren on their way to lessons. Seven to ten people may ride in one car" (12). But most people usually walk "… with the communities of people who make the streets their home" (12).

Countless people crowd the railway station every day. The majority of the people are visitors, planning to meet with government officials, to shop, or to visit relatives. Others are working people taking the trains to other cities in efforts to make a few rupees. New people also arrive daily at the station seeking for jobs in the big city.

All over the place in Bhopal, religion is apparent. Hindus are seen praying to their gods for a safe trip. "They leave religious paintings, created with chalk, powder, and rose petals, on the floor of the station" (13). Eighty percent of Indians are loyal of Hinduism. Although the leading religion of India's people is Hinduism, the majority of Bhopal's residents are Muslims.

Bhopal's Muslims worship mosques, and one of the biggest mosques in the world is the Taj-ul-Masajid, which is located south of the city. They worship there five times a day to pray and also pray at other numerous mosques around the city.

"Muslims have always been in conflict with the Hindu majority" (13). It all began when Muslims first invaded India. And their disputes still continue today.
In India, there are three main classes of people: top, middle, and bottom class. The top class includes people of such sort, such as managers and officials who work in government and industry, wealthy businessmen, engineers, doctors, and other professions. They all live in a new section of the city, with paved roads, and items that other unfortunate people don't have like air conditioning. These new and modern glitters are created especially for them. And all of these is in the best location of Bhopal, away from all the crowds of people.

The middle class people consist of lower management and government officials, artisans, and businessmen. These seem like high paying jobs but their incomes...
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