Updated: August 21, 2011 14:35 IST

Government toughens stand on Anna

Aarti Dhar
Comment (14)   ·   print   ·   T  T  
Manish Tewari:
Manish Tewari: "Anna Hazare and his associates will need to answer conclusions of Sawant Commission.” File photo

Taking a tough stand against social-activist Anna Hazare ahead of his proposed fast from Tuesday, the government on Sunday described his proposed fast on Lokpal issue as "unjustified and an affront to Parliament.’’

"There is nothing more undemocratic than the stand taken by Anna Hazare,’’ Union Human Resource Development (HRD) Minister Kapil Sibal told reporters here after a meeting of the Group of Ministers on media. He said no fundamental right was absolute. While the individuals had a right to protest, authorities have to keep public order has to be kept in mind while deciding on the place and time, the Minister said as he quoted court judgements on the issue.

Earlier, the Congress party also launched an offensive against Mr Hazare accusing him of spreading anarchy and asking him to clarify the ``serious findings’’ against him by Justice P.B.Sawant Commission of Inquiry that had found him guilty of corrupt practices and maladministration.

The attack comes a day after Anna Hazare wrote a harshly-worded letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh seeking his intervention in providing them a place to sit on a dharna and fast from August 16. "Anna only was television and cameras. Fast is for self-purification and not revolution," Mr Sibal said even as he described the move as completely uncalled for. It is not an insult of the Prime Minister but of the national flag, Mr Tewari said.

Suggesting that the language used in the letter "was not Gandhian" from any point of view, Mr Sibal and Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni said: ``Is all that he has written in the letter shows any Gandhian mindset? It is not known who has written the letter but it has Anna Hazare's signatures. Nobody has attempted to hit the Prime Minister in such a below the belt manner."

"Even the Opposition never pointed a finger at the Prime Minister's honesty. Everybody said Manmohan Singh was personally honest," Ms Soni said. Mr Tewari especially was critical of Hazare for the tone and tenor of his letter to the Prime Minister and accused him of crossing all limits of "decency and decorum".

Asked whether the government could hold another round of talks with Team Hazare on Lokpal bill, Mr Sibal said the matter was now between Standing Committee and Mr Hazare as the matter has gone from the government to Parliament now.

"The fast from August 16 has nothing to do with either the issue of corruption or the Lokpal bill," Congress spokesman Manish Tewari said, claiming that the "moral core" of Anna Hazare has been exposed by the Justice P B Sawant Commission.

The Commission in 2003 had probed corruption charges levelled against him and four ministers in the then Maharashtra government and found them guilty of charges of malpractices. However, the State government in 2006 appointed a task force, under former Chief Secretary D.M. Sukthankar, to recommend action against those found guilty which recommended no action against Anna Hazare.

"What is his clarification about the serious findings. The nation wants to know," Mr Tewari said, adding, "I think Hazare and his associates will need to answer conclusions of Sawant Commission." Mr Tewari and Mr Sibal, both parried questions on Sukthankar committee’s recommendation.

The party also charged Hazare with systematically attempting to bring instability in the country and insulting Parliament before which the Lokpal bill has been brought. "When someone tries to bring destabilisation, it becomes the duty of any political party to (fight back)", he said.

The Commission had probed the functioning of four trusts of Mr Hazare including Hind Swaraj Trust formed in 1995 with the objective of rural development and moral education.

He claimed that Justice Sawant has faulted Mr Hazare for spending 2.2 lakh from the Trust for his birthday celebrations and amounted to a corrupt practice. On the Yadav Baba Shikshan Prasaran Mandali, the Commission observed that for 20 years the Trust had not given its accounts.

Another Trust, Bhrashtachar Virodhi Jan Andolan Sansthan was found by the Commission of having some workers who were "abusing the platform through extortion, blackmail, grabbing property of others", he alleged.

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Attack on Anna!!! The one who is fighting on the corruption. This reminds Tughluq's barbaric rule. I wonder when Congress party would learn to live in a socialized culture. They are the shameless party and people with so many corrupted leaders. I am sure they will pay the price during next election.

from:  Srini Gudi
Posted on: Aug 17, 2011 at 03:12 IST

The entire nation knows Mr.Anna Hazare is the Man who did more to his village than any other politician did . This shows the desperate moves that Government is showing to cover up their corruption. The Government action's are already showing the strength of the Lokpal bill as it is making the politicians jittery even before the bill has passed.otherwise why would Government get into proving an innocent man corrupt?

from:  Jyotsna Ramisetty
Posted on: Aug 16, 2011 at 13:50 IST

Media should do background check on Manish Tiwari. His beginnings, up bringing and dealings.

from:  prasbad
Posted on: Aug 16, 2011 at 01:39 IST

It looks like the Govt along with the ministers are carrying on a mud slinging campaign against Anna Hazare,the Gandhian.We are all in support of your crusade against the corruption,Dear Anna!!!Hats off

from:  Syam
Posted on: Aug 15, 2011 at 17:19 IST

Any tough action against Team Anna will be construed as anti-national, as it is Manmohan Singh is proving to be the biggest burden on this country than any single Indian by his in-capacity to deal with anything and once again if he fails to deal with Team Anna in a proper perpective it will spell doom not for Manmohan Singh probably for the parliamentary system of governance in India.

from:  xavier surender
Posted on: Aug 15, 2011 at 10:40 IST

Something happened to Maneesh... we can rely on Anna than Maneesh and other Congress leaders.... Congress leaders are trying to humiliate all persons who are against their corruption.

from:  John paul
Posted on: Aug 15, 2011 at 09:57 IST

The charges are prima facie false . It is a fact that Government is getting jittery.

from:  RAVI KANT
Posted on: Aug 15, 2011 at 09:24 IST

The congress is trying to create an emergency like situation.. How can it stop a peaceful protest? It can take action if there is disturbance and violence.. We all shall join anna and court arrest if congress insist on stoping protests.. Today's PM address was shame and a stab on our country's back.. People should teach them lesson...

from:  Virender kulharia
Posted on: Aug 15, 2011 at 08:17 IST

Mr Kapil Sibal and Manish brought up an important issue of verifying credentials of individuals who talk of anti corruption. Are they ready to apply this rule to their own party leaders whenever they speak about such issues? Is congress party ready for scrutiny of it's leaders for their credentials to speak about anti corruption ?

from:  Srinivas
Posted on: Aug 15, 2011 at 02:14 IST

Now the Congress Ministers Mr Sibal and others are making corrupt charges against an honest and upright individual Mr Hazare.Why these Ministers and the Hon'ble Prime Minister continued dialogue with Mr Hazare and his team so many times,as they already know Mr Hazare is Corrupt.The entire Nation is keenly Watching the undemocratic and Rowdy attitude of these Ministers.They all will be thrown out by the people in the coming Elections.More than 90% population of the Nation want to Implement a Perfect Lokpal as Mr Hazare and his team insisting the UPA Government not the Jokpal prepared by the Government.

from:  Arupathy Kalyanam
Posted on: Aug 15, 2011 at 00:08 IST

The Congress, which is steeped in corruption amounting to lakhs of crores of rupees has now got desperate and has resorted to maligning the very crusaders of anticorruption as a last-ditch attempt to salvage whatever little pride is left. But, every Indian is behind Anna. They have a team which acts systematically (with the knowledge of PM Manmohan Singh) to kill the anti-corruption movement. They have some loud mouths like 'Diggi', liars like Manish Tiwari, corporate agents like Sibal who do the initial damage by commenting whatever comes to their mind. The leadership (Sonia and Manmohan) revel in this slander. Then Soniaji chips in (after all the damage is done) to pacify the anti-corruption crusaders. Sibal talks of 'electorate and elections'. Does any of our politicians get elected on merit? Its money, muscle and liquour that elects them... Today if India were to vote between Manmohan and Anna, I am sure Anna would win... Time for another revolution guys.....JAI HIND!

from:  Dhanraj
Posted on: Aug 14, 2011 at 21:51 IST

The more the government tries to accuse Anna and others like him, the more the general public will know that the Government wants to hide something or somebodies.

from:  Kapil Aurora
Posted on: Aug 14, 2011 at 21:41 IST

Mr Sibal says that fast is not for revolution. What is he suggesting? That honest Indians who are tired of being bullied by a rogue Govt take up arms like the Libyans? He should be accused of trying to foster violence. This movement won't bring any destabilization except to the Govt's coalition and some Ministers' coffers. So the UPA is fighting back against the attempts to bring the guilty among Govt to book? That is NOT what a democracy is, whatever high and mighty terms the Govt might try to hide behind.

from:  Aritra Gupta
Posted on: Aug 14, 2011 at 21:05 IST

This is a sordid, shameless, barbaric and desperate attack on an honest and upright individual. Mr Hazare's movement consists of upright and idealistic people who want to take on the Govt by peaceful means. Mere protest against the regime does not make a movement violent nor does it bring instability to the State. This response by the Govt is akin to Assad's crackdown in Syria or the Bahrain Monarchy's unleashing of armed riot police on a peaceful crowd. Mr Sibal says Mr Hazare's moves are undemocratic.Is stealing the people's money/dillydallying on efforts to bring back stashed money democratic in any way Mr Sibal?

from:  Aritra Gupta
Posted on: Aug 14, 2011 at 20:38 IST
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