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Sofia Ashraf challenges Unilever CEO Paul Polman in brand new video
Rapper/performer Sofia Ashraf is BACK with another video for the #UnileverPollutes campaign. Last year, Unilever’s mercury mess made international news with Sofia’s parody music video ‘Kodaikanal won’t. 591 ex-workers were compensated by Unilever as a result of the mounting public pressure after the video went viral.
Now, the people of Kodaikanal are demanding a world-class clean up of the mercury left behind by HUL’s thermometer factory. You can watch the video at this link.
“Unilever has been putting out misleading statements for years, and this video is our response,” says Divya Narayanan, campaigner at Jhatkaa.org. “In order for the government officials to make the best decisions for Kodaikanal, they need have accurate information, so I hope the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board and the Ministry of Environment pay close attention. The goal of this video is to correct the public record and expose Unilever’s double standards.
“We also challenge Mr. Polman to respond to this video, but this time we want him to put science above commerce. Just like the UK, where Unilever is headquartered, India and Kodaikanal deserves safe standards NOT double standards.”
In the video, Sofia challenges some of Unilever’s biggest misleading statements. Right from the fact that 1.3 tonnes of mercury waste have been dumped in the Pambar Shola reserve forest. Not only that but some mercury-laden scrap glass from Unilever’s factory was sold to toy-makers who made marbles that children play with.
The video also highlights how Unilever’s currently proposed cleanup standard would leave behind 20 milligrams of mercury in every kilogram of soil AFTER the cleanup is complete. This standard is TWENTY times weaker than what would be allowed in the United Kingdom, where Unilever is headquartered.
This video has been released as part of the second phase of the campaign. Last week, Jhatkaa.org asked people from India and around the world to send emails to India’s new environment minister Anil Dave urging him to ensure that Kodaikanal gets the world-class clean-up it deserves. As of now, more than 13,900 emails have been sent to Minister Dave and his secretaries. The action page can be found here.
Jhatkaa.org is a campaigning organisation committed to building grassroots citizen power across India in effective and innovative ways. Jhatkaa.org helps people take action collectively on issues that interest or affect them, and create change that would not be possible if they acted alone. Jhatkaa.org also collaborates with civil society to engage citizens to hold corporate, cultural and government leaders accountable in real time at key decision moments through various digital communication platforms. Read more about Jhatkaa.org’s victories and press hits.
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