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Dow Chemicals pull plug on Vicky Park water charity event

PUBLISHED: 19:00 16 April 2010 | UPDATED: 15:53 05 October 2010

A MASSIVE charity event raising money for water programmes in Africa due to take place in East London’s Victoria Park on Sunday has been cancelled. Campaigners planned to stage demonstrations against Dow Chemical Company when the organisers pulled the plug

By Emma Bartholomew

A MASSIVE charity event raising money for water programmes in Africa due to take place in East London's Victoria Park on Sunday has been cancelled.

Campaigners planned to stage demonstrations against the sponsor, Dow Chemical Company, when the organisers pulled the plug on the fun-run and live concert, one of many events taking place in 50 countries.

The company's subsidiary, Union Carbide, was responsible for leaked toxic gas in 1984 from a pesticide plant in Bhopal in India which caused a huge environmental disaster and an estimated 15,000 deaths. Poisonous chemicals abandoned at the plant continued polluting the groundwater in the region.

Sunday's event has been cancelled because it hasn't attracted enough people at £25-a-head to make it financially viable, according to Tower Hamlets Council which manages Vicky Park.

The International Campaign for Justice in Bhopal group had planned to 'hijack' the day with protests.

Its spokesman Tim Edwards said: "Dow's intention to 'greenwash' and present itself as an ethical, sustainable organisation has failed to work."

The campaigners now plan a 'celebration picnic' on Sunday in Victoria Park from 10am to 1pm.

Similar events have been cancelled in Milan and Berlin. But organisers in Sweden are going ahead with the event.

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