Team Anna ends fast, to resort political referendum

Saturday, August 04, 2012
New Delhi: Alleging the government with ‘resisting’ their demand for an effective Lokpal, Social activist Anna Hazare and his three team members called off their fast here on Friday with a evocation for public support to show their alacrity in anti-corruption movement and take it from “the street to parliament”.

Anna Hazare and Arvind Kejriwal along with their team
members at Jantar Mantar
Striking chord with the endless crowd at the Jantar Mantar and transforming the entire movement from a focused Jan Lokpal Anna and his team members took the plunge on Friday, announcing that they would reform a political party to contest the 2014 general election. 

With this decision team Anna has threw the ball rolling for a huge political debate in the time where several political parties were engaged in acrimonious blame-game war over several issues like the recent power blackout in India.

On the tenth day of his fast, Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal gave a call for Sampoorna Kranti (total revolution) and challenged Congress to pass the activists' Jan Lokpal laws, including the right to recall, reject and gram sabhas.

Clarifying public ambiguity about his party and its proposed working structure Kejriwal said, “ It would not be a party only rather will be an ‘andolan’ (movement) without a high command. It will be a platform where people will select the candidates.”     

“We will go the farmers, to the youth and the unemployed, go around the country asking people about issues plaguing them and their solutions and they will decide the manifesto, " Kejriwal added.

 Anna Hazare, made it clear that neither he would launch a party nor he would contest any elections.

The team Anna decision might, however, force BJP to recast its political strategy ahead of 2014 general elections as if believed it percentage might have backed the movement, believing it would hurts the Congress most.

Addressing a gathering Hazare justified the move as he said, “Those who are now questioning our intentions had earlier asked us to first get elected to the Lok Sabha if we wanted to raise Lokpal and corruption issues.
Now why they are raising questions? was when General (retired) V.K. Singh and other eminent citizens appealed to us to break our fast and provide an alternative that we decided to drop the ‘anshan’ (fast).”

Reacting to the move, Congress, however, said Team Anna’s decision was a face saver to end the fast as the issues raised by the activists were “completely hollow” in substance. While to the contrary some BJP leaders has welcomed the team Anna decision saying every one free to enter in political arena.

Its response was guarded. "If somebody wants to join the political mainstream and fight corruption, we welcome it," said general secretary Ravi Shankar Prasad.

Mr. Hazare said he would travel across the country to awaken the people on the plan to give a political alternative.

Interestingly, the Yoga guru Baba Ramdev is due to launch his stir from August 9 onward over the issue of black money and anti-graft. Reportedly, arrangements for this agitation are in full swing and rumors are that Ramdev would reach the Ramlila Maidan in New Delhi with more than a lakh of his followers.
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