Bopoal Gas Tragedy on the night of December 2/3, 1984 is a sad example of human negligence which caused deadliest air pollution claiming 5,000 human lives and rendering many thousands sick and handicapped. It is due to the sudden leakage of the poisonous gas methyl is cymae (MIC) from the Union Carbide Factory at Bhopal which was stored to manufacture pesticides.
The leakage continued for 40 minutes and the poisonous gas was quickly spread in the air of nearby localities of old Bhopal under the impact of morning breeze killing thousands of human beings and animals.
The gas also polluted drinking water, soils and adversely affected fetus of pregnant women, newly born babies, children and old people. About 200 women delivered dead babies and about 400 babies died within a few hours of their birth. About 47 percent of the pregnant women suffered from instantaneous abortion and many preferred voluntary abortion.
According to the official figures about 10,000 people have been made permanently disabled and about 30,000 partially handicapped. About 1.5 lakh people are the victims of minor disability. Newly born babies, who could survive, have developed blue spots on their livers and are suffering from cough, asthma and eye trouble.
The tragedy is a warning to humanity to put curb on the production of poisonous gases, take utmost precaution on their storage and use and devise proper mechanism to avert and safely manage such tragedies on war footing.