American activist leads international anti-Coke movement via internet
The next time you feel ground under the heel of global capitalism, take inspiration from Amit Srivastava. The “one-man NGO armed with just a laptop computer, a website, and a telephone calling card,” as The Wall Street Journal describes him, has become the lynchpin of an international movement demanding that Coca-Cola Co. be held accountable for causing environmental and human-health damage in India. Charges against the mega-peddler of fizzy sugar water include draining water supplies in drought-stricken areas, selling drinks containing pesticide residues, and giving away cadmium-laced sludge to farmers for fertilizer. Coke is defending itself across India, losing millions of dollars in sales and legal fees. While a Coke exec complains that activists “are making false environmental allegations against us to further an anti-globalization agenda,” Srivastava and his allies are undeterred by Coke’s denials.