The paper 'Bhopal Disaster Issues' is a perfect example of a Management Case Study. The Bhopal gas tragedy in India ranks among the worst of the industrial accidents that have occurred in the world. Bhopal is a populous city, with its population in 1984 approximately 900.000. During the late-night of December 2 and early morning of December 3, 1984, many of the sleeping population of Bhopal city were enveloped by a cloud of deadly gas that had leaked out from the American-owned Union Carbide pesticide, located nearly three miles outside the city of Bhopal.
According to Union Carbide later, this toxic gas was methyl isocyanate gas. The consequence was a disaster in terms of human and animal casualties. It is estimated that nearly 3,000 people died from the effects of the toxic gas within a few days. More than fifty thousand required medical attention due to the toxic effects of the gas. Later estimates have suggested that in the many years since the gas tragedy, the toxic gas has continued to take its toll, with nearly 20,000 people have died of the delayed effects of the toxic gas.
Though the Union Carbide pesticide factory was closed subsequent to the gas leak, the Bhopal gas tragedy and its consequences continue to reverberate around the world (BBC, 2008). Background to the Bhopal DisasterThe pesticide factory at Bhopal was the result of the Indian objective of increasing the productivity of its farming efforts and becoming self-sufficient in agricultural products, in what can be termed as the Green Revolution in the late 1960s and 1970s. This boosted efforts in the agricultural sector meant an increased need for pesticides and the Government of India gave sanction to the American based Union Carbide to set up a small plant to formulate pesticides in the state of Madhya Pradesh in 1969.
Union Carbide decided to set up this plant to manufacture pesticides at Bhopal, which was the capital of the state of Madhya Pradesh as an Indian subsidiary unit under the name of Union Carbide India Ltd (TED Case Studies).
BBC. 2008, ‘1984: Hundreds die in Bhopal chemical accident’, [Online] Available at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/december/3/newsid_2698000/2698709.stm (Accessed on November 25, 2008).
Dinham, B. & Sarangi, S. 2002, ‘The Bhopal gas tragedy 1984 to ? The evasion of corporate responsibility’. Environment & Urbanization, vol.14, no.1, p.89-99.
Kalelkar, S. A. 1998, ‘Investigation of Large Magnitude Incidents: Bhopal As A Case Study’. Presented at the Institution of Chemical Engineers Conference on Preventing Major Chemical Accidents. London. 1998. [Online] Available at: http://www.bhopal.com/pdfs/casestdy.pdf (Accessed on November 25, 2008).
Puri, S. 2008, ‘Face to Face with the Bhopal Gas Tragedy’, [Online] Available at: http://www.swarajpuri.com/facetofacebhopal.htm (Accessed on November 25, 2008).
Sriramachari, S. 2004, ‘The Bhopal gas tragedy: An environmental disaster’, Current Science, vol.86, no.7, pp.905-920.
TED Case Studies. ‘Bhopal Disaster’ [Online] Available at: http://www.american.edu/ted/bhopal.htm (Accessed on November 25, 2008).
‘U.S. court reinstates Bhopal water pollution case’. 2008, NowPublic [Online] Available at: http://www.nowpublic.com/environment/u-s-court-reinstates-bhopal-water-pollution-case (Accessed on November 25, 2008).