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Anderson, Bhopal Tragedy Villain, Dead

OCTOBER 31, 2014

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Anderson, Bhopal Tragedy Villain, Dead


Warren Anderson, former Union Carbide boss, who was a most wanted man in India in connection with the 1984 Bhopal gas tragedy which claimed over 3,000 lives in gas leakage, has passed away in Florida, USA aged 92. Anderson had died on September 29 in Florida but his death was not announced by his family then.

The Indian government had made efforts to extradite him for the world's worst industrial disaster and officially called him a fugitive. Anderson had reached Bhopal four days after the accident, where he was immediately put under arrest. But after a quick bail, he took off and never returned to face the trial. The Bhopal horror happened at midnight on December 2-3, 1984, when a toxic gas (Methyl Isocyanate) leak swept through the surrounding community, killing some 3000 and leaving lakhs of others handicapped for life. The Madhya Pradesh government confirmed 3,787 deaths but unofficial estimates put the toll at 10,000. The disturbing imges of thousands of mass graves and cremations, including those of young children,  still haunt the city and its residents, who have never been able to come to terms with the tragedy even after three decades.

More than 5 lakh people were injured, with many dying from illnesses later including lung cancer, kidney failure and liver disease. In 1989, Union Carbide paid $470 million to the Indian government to settle the litigation for compensation arising from the disaster. With the support of the US government, he escaped extradition and escaped civil cases by living quietly and migrating between his homes in Vero Beach, Greenwich, Connecticut and Bridgehampton, New York.


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