Support pours in for Hazare's movement

The Bharatiya Janata Party and the Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Wednesday came out in support of social activist Anna Hazare's fast-unto-death in the capital and urged the Centre to take the issue seriously. More social organisations and celebrities also joined the movement, asking the government to come out with an effective Lokpal Bill.

Senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley urged the Centre to take Mr. Hazare's agitation seriously. “The Congress party and the UPA government should take this fast seriously and not take it to be merely politically motivated. Fighting corruption is a must and the government should talk to all concerned for bringing up the Lokpal Bill in Parliament,” he said in Guwahati.

Similarly, CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat demanded a comprehensive Lokpal Bill to effectively deal with corruption. The government should consult all political parties, organisations, prominent persons before drafting or enacting the legislation, Mr. Karat said in Coimbatore.

Popular film stars are also supporting Mr. Hazare's movement. In his letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Aamir Khan said: “I am one of over a billion citizens of this country who is affected by, and most concerned about, corruption in our country. The last few months have witnessed shocking exposes. I am one of the many who feel that strong steps need to be taken as corrective measures…It is, therefore, with great hope and humility that I request you to pay heed to the voice of Mr. Anna Hazare.”

Filmmakers Shekhar Kapur and Madhur Bhandarkar besides actors Anupam Kher, Rahul Bose and Juhi Chawla expressed support to the anti-corruption crusader who has pledged not to end his hunger strike till the government agreed to form a bill drafting committee having members of civil society.

Supporting Mr. Hazare's demand, the Co-ordination Committee of the All Bar Associations of Delhi said lawyers have decided to wear red ribbon on April 8 to highlight the issue of corruption in judiciary, tribunals, government departments and public sector undertakings.

In a separate statement, the Aruna Roy-led Mazdoor Kisan Shakti Sanghatan struck a note of caution. The MKSS said that while the organisation welcomed a strong Lokpal Bill and appreciated the efforts of Mr. Hazare, it was concerned at the “bypassing of the democratic processes for political expediency”.

The statement, signed by Ms. Roy and Nikhil Dey said: “Bypassing of democratic process for political expediency, however desirable the outcome [is], may be detrimental to democracy itself.”

Further, “our focus is not on ensuring that there is 50 per cent representation for civil society with members of the GoM … but to demand that the government immediately announce its intention to pass a strong Lokpal legislation based on wide public consultations.”

Ms. Roy and Mr. Dey promised to network with the National Campaign for the People's Right to Information (NCPRI) and other like-minded campaigns for an independent, accountable and effective Lokpal.

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Printable version | May 17, 2022 3:19:15 am |