Notorious criminal Warren Andersen, under whose stewardship the biggest killer gas leak happened in the Central Indian city of Bhopal had died in Florida, USA.
The Bhopal disaster took place in a plant belonging to Union Carbide’s (UCC) Indian subsidiary, Union Carbide India Limited, in Bhopal during 1984. Thousands of people died and thousands more were injured in the disaster. As the UCC CEO, Anderson was charged with murder by Indian authorities. He flew to India and was promptly placed in custody by Indian authorities. Anderson who got bail later, and was controversially allowed to leave the country, never returned.
On the night of the disaster, when an explosion at Union Carbide’s pesticide plant in Bhopal caused 40 tonnes of lethal gas to seep into the city, six safety measures designed to prevent a gas leak had either malfunctioned, were turned off or were otherwise inadequate. In addition, the safety siren, intended to alert the community should an incident occur at the plant, was turned off.
Union Carbide responded to the disaster by paying survivors inadequate compensation and abandoning the plant, leaving tonnes of dangerous toxic chemicals strewn around the site and the people of Bhopal with a toxic legacy that is still causing injury today. In 2001, the company shed its name by merging with Dow Chemical.
The US government had refused to extradite Warren Andersen to India saying that there was insufficient evidence to show his culpability.
Warren Anderson’s death was not announced by his family, was confirmed from public records in Florida, USA
In the last week, companies like Apple and Facebook have laid the seeds for what is now known in HR lingo as the perks war. Facebook has announced that it has recently began covering egg freezing, and Apple will start in January next, benefiting women employees who would like to postpone child bearing in the prime of their career.
Reacting to this, and also laying down an Indian HR context to this, Mr D Venkat, CE,O, Strides HR Consulting said here – “In my experience of managing rewards for candidates, what really works as a morale booster at the workplace are clearly quantifiable and tangible rewards. Egg freezing perks, which the global techies have offered are grossly misleading from the point of the final outcome. It’s just a hype, and the cash rich valley techies are making much ado about nothing, with their ability to throw cash. In the case of egg-freezing, when we consider the view of medical professionals, it is clear that the outcome is not just assured”
“There are many other ways in which the corporate can communicate that the women employees are more than equal; Egg Freezing perks certainly do not in reality make the women equal” he emphatically added.
He also mentioned that technology such as egg freezing are no guarantees for a successful or healthy pregnancy and delivery. Quoting medical information which is relevant to such perks and the outcome, he said – as per eminent doctors, in order to attempt pregnancy, egg freezing must be followed by in vitro fertilization (IVF) with another laboratory procedure; data available globally reveals a 77% failure rate of frozen eggs in women aged 30 and a 91% failure rate in women aged 40.
Looks like, egg-freezing allowances are not a real perk, after all the hue and cry?!
Tamil news channel, “News7Tamil” launched a little earlier in the day today, and in a first of its kind, the launch broadcast was led by an all women editorial and technical team, a channel official stated. A complete women crew was in command of the editorial and technical operations related to the launch programs.
In a proud moment for the members of the launch crew, and the new channels top management, the launch that commenced at 6 am was an all-women show – Pramila Krishnan was the shift in-charge of the newsroom, Rafia Begam led the Output shift and Dhanya Lakshmi led the studio floor camera team. The Production Control Room was commanded by Anandhi G and Uma Gomathi. The Broadcast and IT shifts were led by Bhuveshwari G and Divya V.
The inaugural broadcast, the official added, will feature reports from women reporters across Tamil Nadu including Tamilarasi and Sherly in Coimbatore, Jansi M in Madurai and Anbarasi in Puducherry.
The channel stated that with an average employee age of 25 years, News7Tamil has the youngest television newsroom in the world. It is also the only television news station in the world to have a separate social media studio, it added. The channel is said to be equipped with one of the largest video walls in the world, the latest versions of the most advanced broadcast, news gathering and newsroom automation systems, and News7Tamil would be one of the most technologically advanced news stations in the world.
The Narendra Modi led NDA government was sort of embarrased in the highest court of the country today – in a blow to the dilly dallying approach of the centre making names public in a selective way, the court ordered that the list of black money holders, in toto, be handed over by tomorrow to the court.
The SC pulled up the government for seeking modification of its order on disclosing names of account holders in foreign banks.
The apex court also ordered the government to just pass the information of account holders and then await its orders on the matter. This decision by the Supreme court comes a day after the centre released eight names against whom it has started prosecution for allegedly stashing black money in foreign banks. Of the eight, three of them were said to have bank account in foreign banks.
This made the court to question the government as to why it was keen on providing a protective umbrella to foreign bank account holders. “We can’t leave the issue of bringing back black money to government. It will never happen during our time”, stated the SC said in its judgement.
This happening in the court is a huge embarrassment for the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, who has, as per even many NDA supporters, has been vacillating on the black money holder list being made public.
Captain Vijayakanth has made his ambitions clear in his speech to his party workers over the last week-end. He has asserted in his speech that with Superstar Rajinikanth refusing to be drawn into the BJP’s bandwagon, he was the front runner to the Chief-minister-ship of the state.
Elections to TN will be held somewhere in 2016, unless there is a drastic change in plans, where the present ADMK government may call for dissolution of the present assembly, and call for snap polls. Some political observers feel that this is a possibility, provided the ousted CM Jayalalitha comes out of her legal wrangles in the disproportionate assets case, which has convicted her along with Sasikala and a few others. Incidentally, Jaya’s appeal is to be heard in the Bangalore High Court today. However, it could be just the beginning of a fairly long drawn process.
Some party workers in the meeting venue where Vijayakanth laid his plans clear however felt that just in case the BJP agrees to the ally DMDK holding the CM chair, it would be Premalatha Vijayakanth who would be the partys choice, and even Vijayakanth would bide by the party’s choice.
The BJP camp is Tamilnadu is amused by these developments; while the leadership in the state Unit would take the actor ally’s speech with a pinch of salt, they will also be left wondering if the DMDK is trying pressure tactics for a larger chunk of seat sharing.
However, political observers feel that elections 2016 in TN are a long way to go, and Vijayakanth’s utterances are too premature.
As the classic adage goes – 2 years is a long long time in politics.
Shashi Tharoor, MP from Trivandrum, and presently persona non grata with the Congress leadership, thanks to his bipartisan views on the “Clean India” campaign call by PM Narendra Modi, in a sense has done it again, much to the chagrin of his party and party-men.
He extended his support to the clean India campaign of the PM by clean up the famous Vizhinjam beach, just 14 kms away from the center of his constituency, Trivandrum.
Apart from tweeting in reply to the Prime Ministers call for support to a Clean India, Dr Tharoor also posted a video of the event and his speech with an appeal to PM Modi that funds be allocated by the centre to help revive the polluted Parvathi Puthanar falling in his home constituency.
While many neutral political observers have indeed lauded Dr Tharoor for his support for the cause of a Clean India, the video and the MP’s speech has left many in the Congress circles wondering if its now a mere formality that the suave leader will formally exit the party, that is battered owing to a series of electoral debacles under the leadership of the mother-son duo, Sonia and Rahul Gandhi.
PM Narendra Modi is likely to attend the swearing in ceremony of the BJP or BJP led government in Maharashtra, as and when it happens.
However, officials of the state governments protocol wing are in a quandary over how the seating arrangements are to be made, just in case Modi does attend the grand swearing in at the precincts of the Mantralaya.
Leaders of the state BJP seem to be of the opinion that the state officials must keep a watch on the swearing ceremony of the M L Khattar led government today, to see how the PM Modi is seated in that function.
“We suggested them that they should watch where PM sits during the swearing-in ceremony of Haryana government today and accordingly make seating arrangements here,” one leader stated.
Looks like the Haryana government officials did not ponder that much on the protocol challenge as this video of the today’s swearing in depicts.