August 14, 2011

No single solution for corruption: President

ITGD Bureau | New Delhi, August 14, 2011 | 20:10


President Pratibha Patil addresses the nation on the eve
of 65th Independence Day.

Terming corruption a cancer affecting the nation, President Pratibha Patil on Sunday said there cannot be just one panacea to deal with the menace and a system of transparency and accountability needs to be put in place at various levels.

"Corruption is a cancer affecting the nation's political, economic, cultural and social life. It is necessary to eliminate it," said Patil in her address to the nation on the eve of the 65th Independence Day.

Though she did not refer to the ongoing debate on the need for a strong Lokpal, suggested by social activist Anna Hazare as an all-powerful institution to deal with corruption in the country, the president said: "There cannot be just one panacea or remedy to deal with corruption, but a system of transparency and accountability should be put in place at various levels and effectively enforced."

The president further said that pursuing the anti-corruption agenda would require preventive and punitive measures and a rational approach, besides strong institutions and good governance.

"India is known for its sobriety and wisdom, balanced and sensible thinking. We need strong institutions and we need good governance in the country. Our institutions need to be fortified and our governance constantly improved. We should analyse the situation and find considered solutions to address the challenges we are facing in a thoughtful manner," she said.

Stating the credibiltiy of institutions depends upon their conduct, which must be in accordance with the constitutional framework, the president said: "We should strengthen them and their ability to take corrective actions, whenever required. There should be no effort, consciously or otherwise, that will lead to the erosion of institutional credibility and authority."

The president asked the government, parliament, the judiciary and society at large to ponder over corruption and find ways to handle it. Stating that the institutions created by the constitution have been stable, Patil further said the separation of powers and the system of checks and balances have given the country a governance structure in which equilibrium is maintained.

Highlighting the need to preserve democracy and parliamentary procedures, the president suggested electoral reforms, including state funding of elections and debarring criminals from participating in elections to cleanse the system.

Observing that the July 13, 2011 blasts in Mumbai were a grim reminder that terrorism is posing a threat to global peace, the president asked the country to be ever-vigilant to fight the menace.

-- With inputs from IANS




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ੴ / Ik▫oaʼnkār
Re: No single solution for corruption: President

Let us look at one paragraph in the post and see,

Highlighting the need to preserve democracy and parliamentary procedures, the president suggested electoral reforms, including state funding of elections and debarring criminals from participating in elections to cleanse the system.

Is she suggesting India should outlaw the Congress party with officers and officials placed in all critical positions across India since independence who brought India to the state where it is!

Corruption can only be eradicated in a top-down approach not the bottom up approach.

It surely is not the people at the bottom of the food chain!
It is indirectly a way for the Congress party to get back at Ramdev stuff as now they can quote what the President said.

It is a transition of Hiduism in India. Where Congress achieved lot of the objectives covertly. BJP and Ramdev want to take the thin shield off and get Hinduism to start declaring and take actions overtly. Now that lot of the minorities have been sullied or weakened by Congress over the last 60 years.

What a bunch of turd from the mouthpieces at the highest levels.

Sat Sri Akal

Gyani Jarnail Singh

Sawa lakh se EK larraoan
Re: No single solution for corruption: President

What a bunch of turd from the mouthpieces at the highest levels.............

I SECOND That Jios.


Anna Fasts in Custody, Continues '2nd Freedom Struggle'

Hours before he was to launch his fast against corruption, Anna Hazare was today detained by Delhi Police here preventing him from going ahead with his protest. Two other prominent activists Arvind Kejriwal, Kiran Bedi and Manish

Sisodia were also taken into preventive custody, Delhi

Police said. Bedi was held at Rajghat. Reports say Shanti Bhushan too has been taken into preventive custody.

Anna called his detention as the beginning of the "second freedom struggle" and asked people to participate in a "jail bharo" agitation. Read full story | Watch video

The 73-year-old Gandhian was taken into custody from Supreme Enclave in Mayur Vihar, Phase-I before he was to proceed to the venue of his fast in J P Park where prohibitory orders are in place.

According to sources, senior police officials, including DCP (Crime) Ashok Chand, met with Hazare this morning at his apartment where he was staying in a bid to convince him to not go ahead with his planned protest defying prohibitory orders at JP Park.

However, Hazare turned down the request and told police that he will "defy orders" following which he was detained.

"We have detained him as he did not budge from his position of defying prohibitory orders," police official said.

Arvind Kejriwal and Kiran Bedi were also detained. Bedi was detained from Raj Ghat.

Flaying the police move, Bedi said, "Emergency has revisited the country."

"This detention is undemocratic and unconstitutional," she said.

Prohibitory orders have been clamped from MG Marg, Raj Ghat to Guru Nanak Chowk.

Around 500 supporters were with Anna at the time of his detention.

Civil Society core team member Prashant Bhushan denounced government's move calling it undemocratic and said that he would approach court today.

Chanting 'Bharat Mata ki jai' and 'Vande Matram,' supporters created hurdles in the way of the police which were trying to take him to a nearby police station.

Ahead of the proposed fast by the Gandhian, a group of people had thronged the east Delhi apartment where Hazare was staying to pledge their support to his protest.

Security personnel, including some in plain clothes and some from the special branch, were deployed around the apartment premise.

Around 500 police personnel have been deployed from early morning itself after the city police imposed Section 144 around the park, police sources said.

Hazare had on Monday asked his supporters to fill up jails across the country if he was arrested after being denied permission to hold fast here.

After Prime Minister Manmohan Singh slammed him for resorting to fast as a protest when Parliament was seized of the lokpal bill, the Gandhian had said he will go to JP park despite Delhi police imposing prohibitory orders.

"I come to understand that I will be refused permission. We will go there. If I am arrested, I will continue my hunger strike in jail. If I am released, I will go back to the venue and this circle will continue," he had said.

He said once he is arrested, people should fill up the jails in every village across the country. "Going to jail for the country is no crime...It is a decoration," he said.

Delhi Police spokesperson Rajan Bhagat had said that prohibitory orders under Section 144 CrPC has been imposed in some areas of Daryaganj and IP police stations, which include Jai Prakash Narain Park and Shaheed Park.

Hazare had also accused the Prime Minister of "speaking" the language of his ministerial colleague Kapil Sibal, saying the lokpal bill was before Parliament which will take the call.
re: Anna Fasts in Custody, Continues '2nd Freedom Struggle'

salute to the anna hazare for the courage and patriotism he had is behind him,,,,,,but a real shame on our government that we r still fighting in our own country....this is the condition after 56 years of independence...what a country can do and achieve in which people fight against their own people....


Re: Anna Fasts in Custody, Continues '2nd Freedom Struggle'

PM defends Anna's arrest, says his path is 'totally misconceived'

Asserting that Parliament was the sole body to frame laws, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday said Anna Hazare had sought to impose his version of lokpal bill which was "totally misconceived" and fraught with "grave consequences" for Parliamentary democracy. Making a

statement in
both Houses
of Parliament in the wake of action against Hazare and his supporters, Singh said the government acknowledges the right of citizens to hold peaceful protests but permission for these is given subject to "appropriate conditions".

Amid continued chants of "shame shame" by Opposition benches, he appealed to all political parties to ensure that the government and its processes and Parliament and its processes function smoothly and effectively.

While giving details of the sequence of events that led to civil activist's arrest and subsequent release, Singh said Hazare had been held as a preventive measure because of apprehension of breach of peace.

"Government does not seek any confrontation with any section of the society. But when some sections of society deliberately challenge the authority of government and prerogative of Parliament, it is the bounden duty of the government to maintain peace and tranquility," he asserted after demand by all Opposition parties that nothing short of Prime Minister's statement would satisfy them.

"Hazare may be inspired by high ideals in his campaign to set up a strong and effective lokpal. However, the path that he has chosen to impose his draft of a bill upon Parliament is totally misconceived and fraught with grave consequences for our Parliamentary democracy," he said.

Singh, who spoke in Parliament soon after a Congress Core Group meeting, asserted that it is the sole prerogative of Parliament to make laws and government has gone by well-settled principles.

Insisting that "the issue" between the government and Anna Hazare is "not one of different attitudes to fighting corruption", the Prime Minister said the civil society activists "must allow the elected representatives of the people in Parliament to do the job that they were elected for.

"With respect to the events of yesterday, I will only say that a functional democracy must allow multiple voices to be heard. But differences of opinion must be resolved through dialogue and consensus. Those who believe that their voice and their voice alone represents the will of 1.2 billion people should reflect deeply on that position," he said.

Singh said everyone in Parliament agrees that lokpal bill must be passed as early as possible. "The question is, who drafts the law and who makes the law. I submit that the time-honoured practice is that the Executive drafts a bill and places it before Parliament and that Parliament debates and adopts the bill with amendments if necessary," he said.

"However, I am not aware of any constitutional philosophy or principle that allows any one to question the sole prerogative of Parliament to make a law," he observed.

He said that in making a law on lokpal, the government has "faithfully adhered to well-settled principles" and Hazare "questions these principles and claims a right to impose his jan lokpal upon Parliament."

While performing the "painful duty" of reporting to Parliament the developments surrounding Hazare, the Prime Minister referred to his Independence Day address where he had spoken at length about the need to deal effectively with corruption.

"I would like to assure the House that we are determined to provide a government that is transparent, accountable and responsive at all times and determined to fight corruption," he said.

But, he maintained, "there is no magic wand by which, in one stroke, we will get rid of menace of corruption. We have to work simultaneously on several fronts."

Singh pointed out that he had outlined some of the measures that government intends to put in place to strengthen fight against corruption and invited all sections of the House to join hands to deal with the "cancer of corruption".

Appealing for allowing smooth functioning of Parliament, he said, "There is no substitute for that. If some people do not agree with our policy, there will be a time when they will have an opportunity to present their points of view to the people of India."

Noting that India is an emerging economy and important player on the world stage, Singh said, "there are many forces that would not like to see India realise its true place in the comity of nations. We must not play into their hands."

He said such an environment should not be created in which "economic progress is hijacked by internal dissension. We must keep our mind focused on the need to push ahead with economic progress for the uplift of the 'aam aadmi' (common man)".

Requesting all political parties to ensure that Parliament functions smoothly, Singh said important legislative measures were required to be passed. "If we do not pass them, we will do great injustice to the people of India and, in turn, hurt the aam aadmi, he said.

He said the government was willing to debate every issue in Parliament. "We are cooperating with the Opposition in every possible way to ensure that Parliament functions smoothly," he said.

The Prime Minister said, "We, as elected representatives of our people, should do nothing to weaken our people's faith in the capacity of our democracy, our institutions and our social ideals and values to overcome all difficulties. We should have faith that we can build a promising future our ourselves. Let us unite in that faith."

Singh said government had held "extensive consultations and discussions" with Hazare and his team on the lokpal bill, held a meeting of all political parties represented in Parliament and introduced a bill in the Lok Sabha.

The bill has been referred to the Standing Committee concerned, he noted.

Singh said notwithstanding the introduction of the bill, Hazare and his supporters have persisted with their demand that the Jan lokpal bill drafted by them be introduced in Parliament and that should be the bill that must be passed.

In support of this demand, Hazare had announced some time ago that he would undertake an indefinite fast beginning August 16, he said.

The Prime Minister said an organisation India Against Corruption (IAC) had given an application to Delhi Police for permission to hold a month-long fast beginning August 16.

The Delhi Police held discussions with the applicants in order to identify a suitable place and to formulate the conditions under which the permission could be granted for holding a fast at that place, he said.

"Eventually, on August 13, 2011, Delhi Police informed the applicants that permission would be granted for the protest at Jai Prakash Narayan Park, near Ferozshah Kotla, subject to permission being granted by the land owning agency and subject to certain conditions," Singh said.

He said the Delhi Police had sought an undertaking from IAC that they would abide by the conditions and when they failed to do so, prohibitory orders were imposed in the area.

Singh said Hazare was arrested after the police were convinced that he and his supporters would commit a cognisable offence by defying prohibitory orders and produced before a magistrate, who sent him to seven days' judicial custody as the activist failed to sign a personal bond.

He said when the Delhi Police came to know that Hazare was seeking legal remedy by approaching the Supreme Court, they sought a review of the order of the magistrate, who decided to release him from custody.

"However, Hazare and others, except one, declined to leave the jail premises unless the Government gave an undertaking that they would be permitted to hold their protest fast at Jai Prakash Narayan Park without any condition," Singh said.
re: Country-wide Protests Continue as Anna Hazare Fasts in Tihar

August 17, 2011

Anna Hazare Anti-Corruption Hunger Strike Spikes Controversy In India


MUNEEZA NAQVI - 08/17/11 - 09:22 AM ET

NEW DELHI -- An activist's threat to fast to death unless the government amends an anti-corruption bill has sparked debate about whether the traditional Indian form of protest has any place in a modern democracy.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday called Anna Hazare's hunger strike "misconceived," but frustrated demonstrators insisted the fast that began Tuesday was the only way to get the attention of an unresponsive government neck-deep in corruption scandals.

Hazare's repeated hunger strikes are part of a hallowed protest tradition made famous by independence leader Mohandas K. Gandhi, who coined the term "Satyagraha" or nonviolent resistance and fasted repeatedly against British rule.

Since then the "fast unto death" – which almost never ends in the protester's death – has become an established route to getting any point of view heard in the rough and tumble of Indian politics.

In India's remote northeast, human rights activist Irom Sharmila has been force fed for over a decade during a hunger strike protesting an anti-terror law that grants Indian soldiers sweeping powers there. Protesters in southern India have fasted to demand the creation of a new state.

But in the past few decades no one has captured the popular imagination and the round-the-clock attention of India's breathless, 24-hour news channels in quite the same way as the 73-year-old Hazare. He has dubbed his protest "the second freedom struggle" and fashioned himself the heir to Gandhi and independence leaders, with his trademark white cotton attire and cap.

Yet Gandhi's protests challenged repressive colonial rule, while Hazare's pits him against a democratically elected Parliament.
Tushar Gandhi, great-grandson of the independence leader also called "Bapu" or father, described the latest hunger strike as having "the stance of blackmail."

"Bapu's fasts never had an adversarial stance, so this is not Gandhi's fast but Anna's fast," he said.

Hazare, a retired army driver, has built his reputation on a host of previous hunger strikes. In 2003, he fasted for 12 days to get a right-to-information law enacted in his home state of Maharashtra. He fasted again the next year for governmental reforms and again in 2005 demanding action be taken against state officials accused of corruption.

In April, he fasted for four days to force the government to draft legislation to create an anti-corruption watchdog. Unhappy with the bill presented to Parliament, he announced plans weeks ago to fast again until the government adopts an alternative version drafted by a group of civil activists.

After the government denied him permission to hold a public demonstration, it briefly arrested him Tuesday and he began his fast in custody. He remained at New Delhi's Tihar Jail on Wednesday – even after the government ordered him released – saying he would not leave until his protest was approved. Outside, hundreds of supporters chanted anti-corruption slogans and sang patriotic songs, while thousands of others protested in cities across India.

Critics of the hunger strike – not all of them supporters of the government – feared that Hazare had stepped over a line, and was sending the message that he, and not the nation's elected representatives, should have the final say on legislation.

"It has elided the distinction between protest and fast-unto-death. The former is legitimate. The latter is blackmail," Pratap Bhanu Mehta, head of the New Delhi-based Centre for Policy Research, wrote in the Indian Express newspaper.

The Congress party-led government can ill afford the public shaming that Hazare's protest draws. But its crackdown has also drawn sharp criticism.

"Do the people in this country have no rights about how an anti-corruption watchdog will work? Is this the end of Indian democracy?" said Prashant Bhushan, a lawyer who was helping organize the protest movement.

On Wednesday, a subdued-looking Singh described Hazare's attempt to force his own bill through Parliament as "misconceived and fraught with grave consequences for our parliamentary democracy."

"A functional democracy must allow multiple voices to be heard. But differences of opinion must be resolved thorough dialogue and consensus. Those who believe that their voice and their voice alone represents the will of 1.2 billion people should reflect deeply on that position," Singh told a jeering Parliament.

Support for strikes and demonstrations has grown in recent decades, with 39 percent of those questioned supporting them, up from 26 percent in 1971, according to a poll by an Indian think tank published last week in The Hindu newspaper.

The poll of 20,268 Indians was conducted from July 25 to July 31. No margin of error was given, but a random survey with that many participants – under ideal conditions – would have a margin of error of less than 1 percentage point.

The rise in support for protests coincided with a string of government corruption scandals over everything from the shady sale of cellphone licenses to the mismanaged hosting of last year's Commonwealth Games. The main opposition is mired in its own scandal involving mining contracts in southern India.

Tushar Gandhi said Hazare's protest painted government officials as the only culprits, instead of indicting the culture that fostered the corruption.

"What we have with this protest is a populist stance and not one of introspection," he said. "If he asks the crowds to introspect, they will melt away."



Pune Sikhs show solidarity with Anna Hazare

PUNE: As an act of solidarity with activist Anna Hazare, the Pune Sikh Sangat, an association representing Sikhs across the city, has demanded his release and fair decision on the current scenario by the prime minister, Manmohan Singh. A memorandum on the same lines will be sent to the District Collectorate on Wednesday, said Rajwant Singh, member of the Sikh Sangat.

"Pune's Sikh Sangat is and has always stood against corruption in various walks of life especially since Sikhism teaches one to be fair to all and leading a pure life. We wish the prime minister of India takes a free and fair decision as per the tenets of Sikhism. Our community is supporting all the citizens protesting for the anti-graft cause and in our letter we have requested the prime minister to take the right decision to handle corruption," added Singh.

The letter demands transparency from the government in power. "The Sikh community just wants to prime minister to take the right stand keeping in mind the situation as far as corruption goes. We dont think he should step down because that is not necessary," said Inderpal Singh.

The government should provide reasons for its acts, said Gurmeet Singh. "On what basis is the government arresting people who are protesting? We can see clearly how much Hazare has struggled for our country. And it's shameful to put him behind bars," said Gurmeet Singh.

Some of the community members are also joining the relay fast on Wednesday and Thursday, said Narendra singh. "All those people joining in the cause are Anna Hazares. The activist is right, otherwise the entire nation wouldn't be supporting him today. It's because corruption was never controlled in the past, that we have reached this stage today. The richer are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. The 'chalta hai' non-chalant attitude typical to our society, is also a result of corruption. this needs to stop. And our community is supporting anyone, who is fighting to ward off corruption through such protests," he said.

Gyani Jarnail Singh

Sawa lakh se EK larraoan
wish them all the best...Baba ramdev...Annah hazareh....who next ???
IT Takes real GUTS to be a BHAGAT SINGH or UDHAM these people have that ??
92% of People who ACTUALLY DIED for Indian independence were SIKHS form PUNJAB...BOTH OF MINORITY status....the REST stood by and CHEERED...and then it was PUNJAB and the SIKHS who got SLAUGHTERED/CUT INTO TWO....and still the MAJORITY stood by and CHEERED and flew Flags on lal kila....Todya Chidambrahm from Tamil nadu is Home Minister...a state which gave not a single death for independence or lost any property !! Majority States like UP, MP Gujrat....Orrissa etc control India and are the most Corrupt. Which state does Annah hazareh come from ?? Has his state any record simialr to PUNJAB ??


Re: Pune Sikhs show solidarity with Anna Hazare

Which state does Annah hazareh come from ?? Has his state any record simialr to PUNJAB ??

Anna Hazare is a marathi.He has spent his entire life fighting against corruption.Till the start of 2011 he was unknown to most of India ,only when he decided to Fight against corruption
and pass a strict lokpal bill he came into limelight.

BTW do we have figure who will fight against corruption in Punjab like anna hazare at present.
Past glories are irrelevant

Gyani Jarnail Singh

Sawa lakh se EK larraoan
Re: Pune Sikhs show solidarity with Anna Hazare

Kds Ji..what do you think of manpreet and his PPP ? can He fight corruption in Punjab ? any hopes..


Re: Pune Sikhs show solidarity with Anna Hazare

Kds Ji..what do you think of manpreet and his PPP ? can He fight corruption in Punjab ? any hopes..

Not at all .I see that battle more similar to Raj ,Bal thackerey battle.When Manpreet was in power did he fight against corruption? at best PPP can become
Vote eating Party which will either favour congress or in some area Badal.Manpreet decided to part ways with Badal because of his ego not because he saw corruption or he care about Sikhi


Anna Live: ‘Have lost 3 kgs but supporters giving me energy’

Friday, August 19th 05:58 PM IST

Anna Live: ‘Have lost 3 kgs but supporters giving me energy’

Anna leaves Tihar Jail to begin his 15-day fast. AP

2:45 pm: Team Anna empowers people at Ramlila Maidan: Kiran Bedi addresses the crowd at Ramlila Maidan. She says Anna has united the entire nation. On Lokpal she said: “Every citizen wants to live with integrity and honesty, but this corruption is a product of misgovernance”. She added that India needs a Jan Lokpal Bill to deal with corruption. “We need number 101, more than 100.” There is no anti-corruption department today, no number to dial. We need 101 to wipe out corruption, Bedi said. “101 will connect the voice of the common man”. When questioned about what 101 is, Bedi said anyone could dial the number and complain about corruption. “101 is the number of the poor.. it will teach the corrupt a lesson,” she said.

Anna Hazare addresses crowd at Ramlila Maidan. AFP

2.15 pm: Anna Hazare addresses crowd at Ramlila Maidan. “Won’t leave Ramlila Maidan till Jan Lokpal Bill is passed.” Praises the youth for the non-violent protest. “We should not let the spirit down. I want people to join me at Ramlila Maidan. Doesn’t matter whether Anna Hazare is there or not, the movement should go on. We can be beheaded but cannot be forced to bow.

Firstpost‘s editor at large Sanjeev Srivastava speaks to us from outside Ramlila Maidan where Anna Hazare is holding his fast:

“The youth of this country has now woken up and India’s future now looks good. India needs a new revolution. All other countries of the world will draw inspiration from our revolution in the future.”

He added that even though he has lost three kilos, he is getting energy from his supporters.

2.00 pm: Anna Hazare sprints at Rajghat, shows India how fit he is. Policemen run behind, taken aback.

1.50 pm: In a move that can be called symbolic, Gandhian Anna Hazare paid homage to the Father of the Nation at Rajghat with a sea of humanity following him.

1.06 pm: The route for the Anna Hazare cavalcade from Tihar Jail to Ramlila Maidan: Tihar – Mayapuri – Rajghat – India Gate – Ramlila Maidan.

12.51 pm: Ignoring the inclement weather, a two-kilometre long human chain is currently following Anna Hazare en route Ramlila Maidan, turning the Delhi streets into a sea of saffron, green and white as innumerable national flags flutter in the air.

12.25 pm: Taking on the government, veteran BJP leader LK Advani said the government failed to assess situation.

12:20 pm: Arrangement at Ramlila Maidan made in a way to accommodate only 30,000 people.

12:10 pm: Kiran Bedi addresses the crowd at Ramlila Maidan.

11:50 am: Anna proceeds to Mayapuri Chowk in a mini open truck but requests his supporters to head directly to Ramlila ground. He is likely to reach the fast venue at 2 pm. He also said this was not an individual battle against the system, but the battle of the nation against corruption, which involves and includes every Indian.

Anna’s supporters are slowly walking behind Anna’s truck.

11:45 am: Anna Hazare urges people to not give up the fight for corruption. He said even after 64 years of Independence, India is not yet free. “This is the second freedom struggle and the flaming torch of freedom should not die out. Whether I live or die, we will keep the fight against freedom alive. Our freedom struggle is incomplete till corruption is wiped out.” He added that the fight for a strong Lokpal Bill is the people’s fight and is far from over.

Anna Hazare comes out of Tihar Jail. AP

11:40 am: Anna Hazare comes out of Tihar Jail. His aides and security personnel escort him out of Tihar Jail. Hundreds cheer Anna as he makes his first statement. He moves towards the makeshift stage to address the crowd waiting outside Tihar.

11:30 am: Swami Agnivesh reaches Tihar Jail.

11:28 am: Team Anna: “We want everyone to be under the ambit of the Lokpal, including the Prime Minister and the Judiciary. We want a Jan Lokpal Bill under any cost. We have accomplished our mission and will not step back , ” says Kiran Bedi.

11:20 am: For the first time in 120 years, Mumbai’s dabbawalas have decided to go on a strike to express their solidarity with Anna’s anti-corruption movement.

11:00 am: Day four of Anna’s fast and he is going to leave Tihar Jail in another 15 minutes. A makeshift stage has been erected for Anna to address the crowd. Around 2,000 people are waiting outside Tihar for Anna, while people at Ramlila ground are singing bhajans and chanting prayers.

10:45 am: Route that Anna will take: Tihar – Delhi Cantt – Narayana – Dhaula Kuan – Outer Ring Road – Shankar Road – Mandir Marg – Outer CP – Minto Road – India Gate – Bahadur Shah Jafar Marg – Shaheed Park – Rajghat – Ramlila Maidan.

10:40 am: The Delhi police is posting warnings for commuters on Facebook. “K indly avoid all roads adjacent to Tihar jail including Lajwanti to Mayapuri Chowk road are heavy due to Shri Anna Hazare’s protest,” the police said in a post.

Anna Hazare will leave Tihar Jail, where he has been camping since Tuesday after his release, at around 11 am today and head for Ramlila ground — the site of his ongoing indefinite fast for a strong Lokpal Bill.

Anna’s close aide Kiran Bedi in an address to the protestors outside Tihar Jail said Anna will first carry out a short rally for half an hour at Mayapuri Chowk, after which he will proceed to Rajghat and then India Gate before heading to Ramlila Maidan at 12 pm.

Bedi, on behalf of Anna, appealed to the people to only accompany Anna till Mayapuri Chowk as Anna does not want a road blockage at Ring Road. “Please reach Ramlila directly from Mayapuri Chowk. Anna will come there after he visits Rajghat and India Gate”, she said.

She further said Anna has been on a dharna for four days because he was taken into custody for no reason and let off two hours later.

When asked about the route that Anna will be taking to reach Ramlila Maidan, Bedi said it will be decided by security personnel to ensure Anna’s safety.

Watch video:Anti-corruption activist Anna hazare will reach Ramlila Maidan on Friday to continue his protest fast.

Earlier in the day, another associate of Anna, Arvind Kejriwal, told NDTV: “Anna will leave Tihar at around 11 am. He further said Anna will address the crowd after he leaves Tihar Jail and will head to Ramlila in a car. “Anna will not march to Ramlila as it is almost 20 kms away.”

Anna is likely to take either one of the routes to reach the venue:

The first goes through Mayapuri Chowk and Karol Bagh to Connaught Place and Mandi House, through ITO to reach Rajghat and Ramlila Maidan. The second is via Wazirpur Chowk and Azadpur Mandi to Chattrasal Stadium to reach Rajghat and Ramlila Maidan.

On Anna’s indefinite strike Kejriwal said, “Anna uses the word indefinite fast because it is more spiritual”. He added that Anna never used the word fast-unto-death.

Anna will not march to Ramlila, but will take the car. AP

On the character of the movement, Kejriwal said, “This movement has remained non-violent because of its leader’s spirituality and his cause.”

He added that Indians are peace-loving and do not like violence. The administration needs to ensure that no unsocial elements enter the movement, he said.

On the preparations at Ramlila Maidan, Kejriwal said no grand arrangements are being made due to paucity of funds.

Delhi Police claimed the Maidan was ready on Thursday, but Anna was advised by his team members to wait as they felt the preparations weren’t enough.

Hundreds of Hazare’s supporters have been camping outside the Tihar premises since Tuesday when the anti-corruption activist was taken to prison.

Meanwhile, police have made elaborate security arrangements to keep untoward incidents at bay. Around 300 police personnel have been pressed into service outside Tihar. Apart from this, a team of Bomb Disposal Squad (BDS) has also been employed along with sniffer dogs.

After two days of hard negotiations, the stand-off between the Gandhian and the government ended early on Thursday with the two sides agreeing that Hazare will undertake a fast for 15 days at the Ramlila ground subject to certain conditions.

Significantly, Team Anna made it clear that his fast would not be a fast-unto-death and he will be on hunger strike only till his health permits.

Seventy-three-year-old Hazare, in a video shot inside Tihar jail, said the protests by “all my brothers and sisters, the elderly and the children” is giving him a “new energy” for his fast.

He said people were fed up of corruption and the government should not take long to bring a strong Lokpal Bill.

Hazare, who is on the third day of his fast inside Tihar Jail, also said he is not “tired” at all.

Watch video: It’s been three days of high drama — from the government refusing to give Anna the go ahead for the fast and arresting him — to practically going down on its knees pleading with him to shift to Ramlila Maidan.

With inputs from PTI
August 18, 2011

Unlikely Echo of Gandhi Inspires Indians to Act

By JIM YARDLEY - The New York Times

NEW DELHI — In a “new” India often obsessed with wealth and status, where cricket batsmen and Bollywood movie stars are wildly idolized, Anna Hazare is a figure from an earlier, seemingly discarded era. His pointed white cap and simple white cotton clothes evoke a Gandhian simplicity. His rural, homespun demeanor ordinarily might elicit snickers from India’s urban elite.

Yet Mr. Hazare, 74, has emerged as the unlikely face of an impassioned people’s movement in India, a public outpouring that has coalesced around fighting corruption but has also tapped into deeper anxieties in a society buffeted by change.

His arrest on Tuesday, made while he was en route to a park in New Delhi where he intended to commence a hunger strike as part of his anticorruption campaign, drove thousands of people onto city streets across India. Under public pressure, government officials tried to release him within hours, but Mr. Hazare refused to leave jail unless the government released him unconditionally. On Thursday, the two sides reached a compromise, and Mr. Hazare is expected to leave jail on Friday to lead a hunger strike and mass protest in central New Delhi to push his demand that the government create a powerful, independent anticorruption agency.

The popular outpouring he has set off has inevitably drawn comparisons with the democratic uprisings of the Arab Spring. Most analysts agree, though, that India’s moment is a different one. But in its own way it may prove to be no less important.

India already has the democratic freedoms sought by protesters in the Middle East and North Africa and has enjoyed rising global influence after two decades of fast economic growth. Yet India is also experiencing what one observer has called a “churning” period, as public frustrations are boiling over about poor roads, shoddy schools, inflation, rising inequality and the pervasive reach of official corruption.

Running through each of these issues is a deepening public disillusionment with India’s political process and a growing disconnectedness between the governing class and the governed, making the corruption issue especially explosive. As the crowds supporting Mr. Hazare grew larger and more passionate this week, person after person seemed to arrive on the New Delhi streets carrying their own tale of official graft.

“It is the middle class who is worst affected by corruption,” said Asha Bhardaaj, a woman who traveled more than 30 miles from the suburbs to join a rally. “The upper class is not affected. The upper classes can get what they need by paying money.”

Mr. Hazare’s appeal seems partly rooted in the traditional values he embodies. He is a longtime social activist who has campaigned against corruption for nearly two decades in the state of Maharashtra, living off a military pension and financing charitable work through donations. If his clothes evoke Mahatma Gandhi, India’s founding father, then so do his protest tactics of nonviolent hunger strikes and peaceful marches.

Yet Mr. Hazare and his advisers have also proved adept at the necessities of modern politics: they have adroitly outmaneuvered the police and government officials who sought to defuse the anticorruption movement, after the decision to arrest him backfired dramatically. They also have exploited the nonstop, often sensationalistic coverage on India’s television news outlets to build public support for their cause. Mr. Hazare’s face is now visible in almost every corner of India.

Mr. Hazare and his advisers — a group of prominent lawyers and social activists nicknamed Team Anna — have spent months campaigning across the country. His aides distribute a flurry of daily e-mail updates to journalists, and his close advisers have used social media to connect with young followers. Early Thursday, one adviser, Kiran Bedi, used Twitter to announce a breakthrough in negotiations with the authorities.

Later on Thursday, Ms. Bedi released a video of Mr. Hazare made inside Tihar Jail, where he is being held. “I got my energy after seeing the young protesters,” he said. “Today is only the third day of protest. I can continue like this for another 10 or 12 days more.”

The governing Indian National Congress Party, by contrast, has seemed rattled, unprepared for the public anger against the government and incapable of delivering a consistent counterargument. One party spokesman personally attacked Mr. Hazare, describing him as a corrupted figure, while another spokesman blamed the United States for supporting the anticorruption movement.

“This is a moral moment,” said Jayaprakash Narayan, a social activist in the city of Hyderabad. “Everybody is sick and tired of corruption. And in dealing with this, the government has shown no political sense at all. There is a lot of anger in the country, not only to end corruption but to end politics as it is conducted today.”

Mr. Hazare was born Kisan Baburao Hazare in 1937 in rural Maharashtra. He still speaks Marathi as his primary language and eventually assumed the name Anna. Beyond his admiration of Gandhi, Mr. Hazare drew inspiration from Swami Vivekananda, a prominent reformer during the 19th century. Having stumbled across the teachings of Vivekananda while serving in the Indian Army, Mr. Hazare decided to dedicate his life to public service after narrowly escaping death while posted on the Pakistan border, according to his official biography.

He served 15 years in the military, qualifying for a pension, and retired to Maharashtra to take up social work. He was awarded two of India’s highest civilian awards for his work, which includes drought-relief efforts and working to create a sustainable Gandhian “model village.”

By the 1990s, Mr. Hazare had begun staging hunger strikes in Maharashtra to pressure state officials linked to corruption. Several were ultimately removed from office. At one point, countercharges against him claimed that money from one of his trusts had been used to pay for his birthday celebration. A government-appointed commission concluded that the money was improperly spent, but Mr. Hazare was never implicated in any personal corruption.

His national profile has risen sharply since this spring, when he came to New Delhi to begin a hunger strike demanding that the government introduce a bill in Parliament to create the anticorruption agency, known as a Lokpal. When thousands of people unexpectedly came out in support, government officials invited Team Anna to join a special committee drafting the Lokpal bill.

For several weeks during the early summer, Mr. Hazare was a periodic visitor at a government guesthouse in New Delhi while attending committee meetings. During an interview in early June, he often spoke with dramatic flourish about the need to eliminate corruption, while also predicting that people would support him again, if necessary.

“I’m confident that people will stand up again,” he said. He had been traveling the country, appearing at rallies to gather support for a Lokpal. “Yes, I feel empowered,” he said in June. “It happens because a large number of people are standing with you. Otherwise, what do I have? I’m a beggar. I live in a temple. I do not have a bankbook. I have only a plant and a bed.”

His methods and goals have not impressed everyone. Critics accused him of trying to hijack the democratic process through protest pressure tactics. Others warned that the type of Lokpal he envisioned could upset the balance of the country’s democratic institutions and accused his group of refusing to compromise.

Ultimately, negotiations broke down in June on the Lokpal legislation. The government has since introduced a bill in Parliament during the current session, but Mr. Hazare has criticized it as too weak. This week, he came to New Delhi to begin another hunger strike when the police arrested him.

Under the compromise reached for his release, Mr. Hazare agreed to limit his hunger strike to 15 days, and the police said they would remove their original restrictions on the number of supporters allowed to attend the protest.

Outside Tihar Jail and elsewhere in the city, people have chanted Mr. Hazare’ s name and voiced anger over the pervasiveness of corruption in daily life. One college student complained that rich families are able to buy admission for their children to top colleges. A man who has a trucking business complained that he had to pay a 10 percent bribe to a petty official in order to get a certificate proving he paid a transport tax on his vehicle.

“Today, when we were coming, a traffic cop stopped our vehicle and suggested that we shell out some money,” said Ajab Singh Gujar, the owner of the trucking business. “I shouted, ‘Victory to Anna Hazare!’

“The cop immediately allowed us to pass through without any bribe.”

Hari Kumar and Nikhila Gill contributed reporting.



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1947-2014 (Archived)
Re: Unlikely Echo of Gandhi Inspires Indians to Act

Soul_jyot ji

Thanks for this opportunity to reflect. We are not even a week away from the anniversary of Partition, and I am left wondering if the journalist/author of the article has a clue that the problems of the hour are the most recent post on a long journey on a road littered with the results of bad decisions. The western media has always had a certain blind spot.


ੴ / Ik▫oaʼnkār
Re: Unlikely Echo of Gandhi Inspires Indians to Act


Pray tell me the difference you see. One is the media hero today and the other previous Prime Minister of India.

It is about politics and power through the state (Congress/BJP) or the religion (Hinduism).

Be on guard for such hero creating machine whose sole purpose is to create fake heroes for suitable times, manipulate and then create a portrayal of false truth fulness and pious objectives behind such.

Hindi, Hindu, Hindustan is the plan.
Ignore it at the expense of non-Hindu future generations.

Sat Sri Akal.


Re: Unlikely Echo of Gandhi Inspires Indians to Act


Pray tell me the difference you see. One is the media hero today and the other previous Prime Minister of India.

It is about politics and power through the state (Congress/BJP) or the religion (Hinduism).

Be on guard for such hero creating machine whose sole purpose is to create fake heroes for suitable times, manipulate and then create a portrayal of false truth fulness and pious objectives behind such.

Sat Sri Akal.

At present Anna Hazare is biggest threat to congress and BJP and Some people believe in conspiracy theories which 5 year old child is not going to beileve lol


ੴ / Ik▫oaʼnkār
Re: Unlikely Echo of Gandhi Inspires Indians to Act

At present Anna Hazare is biggest threat to congress and BJP and Some people believe in conspiracy theories which 5 year old child is not going to beileve lol
kds1980 ji I would love to be wrong for you and all of the younger generation. Just thinking aloud.

If it is a one man movement, he will suitably perish when necessary if reaching a critical mass of strength.
Pretty interesting information about what came from the land that Anna Hazare comes from in the following,

Sat Sri Akal.

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