Anna Returns, Anti-Graft Movement gets a Boost

TNI Bureau: Social activist Anna Hazare returns with a new team, after his split with Arvind Kejriwal-led group, to carry forward his “apolitical” anti-corruption movement for a strong Jan Lokpal Bill. Two months back, Mr Hazare had a split with Kejriwal-led group over the issue of anti-graft movement taking a political course.

The veteran Gandhian, Anna Hazare, announced the 15-member Coordination Committee, which has erstwhile Team Anna’s members Justice (retd.) Santosh Hegde, Kiran Bedi, Medha Patkar, Akhil Gogoi, Sunita Godara, Arvind Gaur, Shivendra Singh Chauhan and Rakesh Rafiq. The new faces in the committee are former DGP (Punjab) Shashikant, former IAS officer Avinash Dharmadhikari, Lt. Col. Brijendra Khokhar, Ran Singh Arya, activist Akshay Kumar and agri expert Vishambhar Chaudhary. In addition, V.K. Singh could be inducted as a special invitee in the Coordination Committee.

Speaking about the new look of the Anna-team, he said “after the split, there have been a doubt that I have become silent and there is no forward movement.” He revealed, “Our fight for Jan Lokpal bill will continue till it is passed by the government. I will campaign throughout the country and try to raise the conscience of the people. I will try to bring in a change,” he said.

Meanwhile, Hazare vowed to start a nation-wide campaign against corruption from Jan 30, the death anniversary of Mahtma Gandhi. “The time has come to reach out to every house in the country and spread the message of anti-corruption. We have to work for a corruption-free India.” He added.

However, Mr. Hazare said the movement’s intention is not to assemble crowds but to awake crores of people and force the Government to enact the law.

On the issue of using the name of  IAC, Mr. Hazare said he was not for confrontation, but he preferred IAC as his photo has been used in the IAC banner. Moreover, the  press statement issued by the Anna group said, “Mr. Hazare reconstituted the Coordination Committee to re-energise India Against Corruption (IAC) movement, signaling a clear message that Anna doesn’t want to forgo the name of IAC.

More importantly, Kiran Bedi revealed that the name IAC would remain with Hazare. She claimed, “It was not Hazare who left the organisation but Arvind Kejriwal-led group, which wanted to enter politics, moved out of the movement. We will seek donations in the name of IAC. She further clarified that Arvind’s organisation is PCRF (Public Cause Research Foundation). People can donate in the name of IAC. Kejriwal agreed to that demand and said he would forego that name, as he has now launched the ‘Aam Aadmi’ party.

Speaking to media, Hazare said the group’s bank account will be in the name of Bedi, Sunita Godara and Lt Colonel Brijender Kokhar, all members of the new coordination committee

Admittedly, corruption is a serious problem in contemporary India. It has affected almost all sections of Indian society; defence, medical, housing, telecom, postal, agriculture, sports, and what not! From High profile politicians to bureaucrats, business tycoons, media persons, judiciary, NGOs almost all are involved in it. In this Juncture, it is very heartening to find Anna Hazare fighting against corruption.  Jan Lokpal Bill if implemented will definitely give teeth to fight corruption effectively. Moreover, Anna Hazare’s return to anti-graft Movement certainly gets a boost.

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