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Bhopal did not figure up during CEOs Forum meeting in US

world Updated: Jun 23, 2010 11:26 IST

The ongoing Bhopal controversy did not figure during the meeting of the Indo-US CEO Forum here, which was attended by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Several Indian CEOs, who attended the meeting, told media that the Bhopal issue did not figure in the talks they had at the State Department on Tuesday.

Finance Minister Mukherjee, who along with other officials from India and the US, including Clinton, attended the luncheon meeting with the CEOs said that the issue did not appear at all.

As expected the Dow CEO Andrew Liveris did not attend the meeting of the CEO Forum, of which he is a member.

In 1999, Dow Chemical Company bought the Union Carbide Corporation which was responsible for the world's worst industrial disaster in 1984 - the Bhopal Gas Tragedy.

Dow washed its hands of any liability for the tragedy which occurred when toxic methyl isocyanate gas leaked from Union Carbide India Ltd (UCIL) pesticide plant in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh on December 3, 1984, killing about 15,000 people while injuring at least five lakh others.

Pepsico Chief Indra Nooyi also did not attend the meeting.

A Dow spokesman said Liveris was unable to attend the meeting because of his prior engagement. The spokesman clarified that his absence from the meeting has nothing to do with the Bhopal controversy.

Meanwhile, in an opinion piece in USA Today, Liveris said that the US should launch an "advanced manufacturing plan."

Manufacturing employs nearly 13 million people in the US and 6 million in related fields.

No other sector performs more R&D, drives more innovation, exports as much or contributes more to our nation's economy, he said.