Janata Dal (U) launches think-tank

BANGALORE, JULY 24. The Janata Dal (United) today launched Manthana, a think-tank that will enable the party to frame several people-oriented programmes and educate the party workers on various developments and subjects of importance concerning the common people.

The former Chief Minister and senior leader of the Janata Dal (U), S.R. Bommai, who launched the think-tank at a formal function at the party headquarters, said Manthana would go a long way in fighting for the cause of the people. While all political parties had think-tanks in the past which enabled them to chalk out programmes, it was unfortunate that most of them were now bereft of programmes. The Janata Dal (U) had made a good beginning by launching a think-tank which would occupy the centre-stage in course of time.

Mr. Bommai said the political situation in the country and the State was going from bad to worse and corruption had become rampant. There was nothing wrong in the general opinion that politics was the last resort of scoundrels since it had often been observed that scoundrels were being encouraged by political parties. "It all depends on which type of people political parties attracts. When they attract people from such quarters, it is natural that they get packed with scoundrels over a period of time. The focus now should be for a change."

He called upon the leaders of the Janata Dal (U) to organise workers' camps periodically. Efforts should also be made to educate the party workers on various subjects and there was also a need to conduct training camps.

The President of the State unit of the Janata Dal (U), B. Somashekar, said the political outlook had vastly changed from what it was in the pre-Independence period when the leaders of all political parties fought for freedom irrespective of caste, creed or religion. Patriotism had then occupied the centre-stage and the common goal of all people was Independence.

There was hardly any corruption and there was not even a mention of it. Today, most political leaders worked with a vested interest and serving the common man had been relegated to the background.

He said in today's politics, people against whom there were charge-sheets and those on bail were continuing in the Government.

"There are governments formed by vested interests and there are governments working for the benefit of vested interests. Elections are becoming increasingly expensive. There are several positions that could be purchased with money and this included being a representative of the people."

Mr. Somashekar said even now it was not too late if political leaders worked to serve the people and thus regain their confidence. s.

The convenor of the think-tank, G.K.C. Reddy, spoke. Mohammed Nazir Ahmed, co-convenor, welcomed the gathering.

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