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Monday, January 10, 2005

India: tsunami warnings could have been made

Thousands died or were left homeless when the December 26 tsunami struck India’s eastern coast and engulfed the Andaman and Nicobar Islands in the Bay of Bengal. The response of the Indian political establishment has revealed its indifference and contempt toward the poverty-stricken villagers and fishermen who were the main victims.

The United Progressive Alliance government (UPA) in New Delhi, along with the state governments in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Pondicherry and Kerala, have insisted that they were unaware of the tsunami and could do nothing to save lives. All of them have defended the lack of a tsunami warning system by insisting that, unlike the Pacific, the Indian Ocean has not experienced frequent tsunamis.

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