Hence Lokpal and Lokayukta are needed all the more, says Anna Hazare
Anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare on Wednesday said Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram would be the first person to go to jail if the Lokpal Bill was passed.
Speaking to his supporters at Navi Mumbai, he said, “If the bill is passed, half the Cabinet of Manmohan Singh would be in jail,” and reiterated that the Prime Minister might be an honest man but the problem “is the remote control through which he is being controlled.”
Ramlila ground fiasco
Mr. Hazare said Mr. Chidambaram was the one who had hatched the conspiracy to arrest him in Delhi and send him back to Pune in August last “but I preferred to go to jail and the government was forced to give the Ramlila ground for the agitation [to end corruption through the Jan Lokpal Bill].” He said the government wanted to scuttle his protest last year like it did Yoga guru Baba Ramdev's agitation “by beating up sleeping women and children at midnight.”
The social activist said the government and the system could not deal with corruption now and hence institutions such as the Lokpal and the Lokayukta were needed all the more. “This government does not want to bring back black money stored abroad because many in the government have their money abroad.”
Will tour country
Mr. Hazare said he would continue to travel throughout the country with Baba Ramdev and once the Lok Sabha elections were declared , “with all my supporters on the streets and me on stage, we will tell them that you cannot come to power if you do not bring Lokpal.”
Mr. Hazare asked his supporters to be ready to go to jail. He said he was not against any particular party.
In Maharashtra, he said, six Cabinet Ministers and over 400 public servants were “forced to resign because of the anti-corruption campaigns launched by me.” He said he was instrumental in bringing in the Right to Information Act, which helped in unearthing many scams.
‘I don't want security'
Mr. Hazare said: “I have written three letters to the government saying I do not need security, but Maharashtra Home Minister R.R Patil insisted that I keep at least some security.
Security couldn't save Rajiv Gandhi and Indira Gandhi, how will it save me? If I have to die, I will die fighting rather than from heart attack.”
Mr. Hazare will conclude his Maharashtra tour on Thursday with a rally at Thane.