By David Gold at the View Tube on the Olympic Park in London

Dow protest_banner3_April20April 20 - Groups protesting against Dow Chemical's sponsorship of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympics have unveiled a protest wrap here today depicting "hard hitting images of some of Dow's controversial activities", 10,000 days after India's Bhopal disaster in December 1984.

Campaigners are calling for London 2012 to withdraw the controversial Dow Wrap, currently being installed around the Olympic Stadium, and for Dow to be dropped as worldwide sponsor of the Games.

Controversy has raged over Dow's link to Union Carbide, whose Indian subsidiary ran a pesticide plant in Madhya Pradesh where a gas leak, 28-years ago, allegedly killed up to 25,000 people.

London 2012 as well as the International Olympic Committee (IOC) have defended the partnership with Dow, arguing that the company bears no responsibility for the actual tragedy since Dow did not buy Union Carbide until 16 years after the disaster.

But anti-Dow campaigners continue to protest about the deal.

The protest wrap (pictured below), some 20 metres long, features shocking images of victims who campaigners claim are still suffering from the impact of the disaster and other injuries caused by Dow produced chemicals.

Sanjay Verma, an infant at the time of the disaster lost both parents and five siblings and is now an activist for the International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal.

Dow protest_banner1_April_20
He was six months old at the time and survived along with one sister and one brother, who has since committed suicide.

He told insidethegames: "We want the organisers of the London Olympics to put down the sign [wrap].

"The Olympics is all about ethics, there are thousands of deaths in Bhopal.

"People are still suffering and dying from the consequences,

"Bhopal is not something that just happened in 1984, it is an ongoing disaster.

"We want Dow Chemical to go and clean up the site."

Verma, who flew over from Bhopal to join the campaign today, insisted that although Dow were not directly involved in the disaster, they had a responsibility to clean up the site and prevent further casualties caused allegedly by ongoing contamination of water supplies, saying "when you buy an asset you are responsible".

Colin Toogood, of The Bhopal Medical Appeal, said: "While Dow and the Indian Government argue over responsibility for Bhopal, people are being poisoned by highly toxic chemicals in drinking water.

Bhopal Disaster_April_20
"The people suffering through water contamination only have us to turn to.

"Until the issue of responsibility is settled once and for all, we must support their medical care and treatment."

The Indian Government is still seeking $1.1 billion (£707 million/€822 million) in further compensation from Dow for victims of the disaster.

However, Dow state that all compensation due was paid when an initial payment of $470 million (£310 million/€351 million) was passed to the Indian Government in 1989.

The Indian Government has also called on the IOC to drop Dow as an Olympic sponsor, although Bhopal campaigners accuse the Government of "double standards" since it recently emerged that Dow had been a supplier for the 2010 Commonwealth Games, held in New Delhi.

Bhopal campaigners are joined by disabled rights, Indian faith and community groups as well as protestors seeking justice for the victims of napalm and Agent Orange attacks in Vietnam during the war with United States in the 1960s and early 1970s when Dow manufactured both substances under American contract.

Dow has been involved with the Games for more than 30 years.

Their current sponsorship runs until 2020.

Contact the writer of this story at [email protected]

Related stories
April 2012: Coalition of environmental and human rights groups launch Olympic sponsor protest campaign
March 2012: London 2012 protest to India over opposition to Dow Chemical Olympic sponsorship
March 2012: "I cannot see a problem with Dow sponsoring the Olympics" says British Prime Minister
March 2012: Dow were not responsible for the Bhopal disaster, insists London 2012 chairman
March 2012: David Owen - Michigan, we have a problem