Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Govt, industry under fire for fudging data

A group of 13 national labour groups and activists accused the ministry of chemicals and fertilizers, along with the asbestos industry, of manipulating information on the hazardous effects to make a case to manufacture asbestos products in the country.
These groups have rested their claims based on the information they obtained by using the Right to Information (RTI) Act. The trade unions argue that the manipulation of information disregards earlier studies, which prove the clear relation between asbestos exposure and lung cancer, because of which 40 countries have banned the use of the white variety of asbestos. India, however, still imports and manufactures asbestos products. According to the United Nations, India imported about 300,600 tonnes of asbestos in 2006 from Canada and Russia.

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