It was called a magic mineral till it was found out to be carcinogenic. Asbestos , a mineral highly used in construction industry , pretty well know for its durable, fire resistant quality and cheap price is now widely associated with lung cancer, mesothelioma and “Asbestosis”.
Such is its toxicity as a human carciniogen that 55 nations has banned its mining except yes the very expected out India, who has big names proclaiming its flaws, roadshows and speaks hailing in every corner but no steps being taken to actually free the huge labour class which is actually subjected to its harmful effects. It continues to use it inspite of its well proven and accepted threats all over the globe.
However, recently India was played out in AP where a proposal to allot a factory site to pune based Sahyadri Ltd in a village of krishan district to set up an asbestos sheet and accessories manufacturing unit was met with a huge public outcry. The proposed plant has a capacity of 1.8 lakhs tones per annum , is opposed by environmentalist and occupational health hazrard researcher incluing the much talked about and really active human rights forum.
Indiahas been the phrasing out mining asbestors since 1986. the central government has stopped granting new mining leases or renewing old one. However this is not the picture of entire mainlandIndia. in the states of Gujrat, Rajasthan , Jharkhand and AP asbestoes is still being mines and suprising LEGALLY !!. About 90% of asbestoes used inIndiais of the Chrysolite variety. The fine fibre of asbestos lodge themselves in the lungs and trigger of cancer. These are also pointers that cause Laryngeal, Ovarian and Gastro intestinal cancers. Latency period of this disease is around 15 yrs thereby making it impossible to track or provide any system to capture the effects of occupational hazard inIndia. hence making it easy for asbestos companies to fool the law.
This definitelt an act of corporate crime amounting to culpable homicide , ignoring the cancer threats as “ a western concept”.