People are 'Maliks', Govt. are 'Sewaks' thunders fasting Anna
New Delhi, July 29 (ANI): Urging Indians across the board to make the government answerable for various acts of corruption over the years, anti graft crusader Anna Hazare on Sunday said that he was confident that at least 60 to 70 percent of corruption in Indian society would end with the passing of a strong Jan Lokpal Bill.
He, however, refused to be dragged into the controversy spawned by stage sharing of Baba Ramdev and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.
Addressing a huge crowd during the first day of his renewed indefinite fast-unto-death, Hazare said, "The people are the maliks (masters). We have to wake up so that the government cannot do more injustice. This can only be achieved if the Jan Lokpal Bill is passed."
"Who is the government? The people, the masses are the government. All the ones we vote for are the 'sewaks' (servants)," he added.
On the Baba Ramdev-Narendra Modi joint stage presence in Ahmedabad, he said: "Why am I being dragged into this controversy? I don't know about it. Don't create rift between us."
Modi also reportedly gave a speech at the rally. The incident is bound to cause a stir as Team Anna has always maintained that they are not pro-BJP.
Earlier in the day, Hazare began his indefinite fast at 10:30 a.m. despite repeated pleas from his associates against it, owing to health concerns.
"I am ready to sacrifice my life for the cause," he said, before adding, "My team had told me not to fast citing health reasons. When over 400 people are on fast, I cannot ignore them and not be on fast. Yesterday also my team appealed to me not to fast but I am sitting on fast from now. I consider I have your permission."
Hazare's blood pressure, weight and pulse rate were checked before the septuagenarian sat on fast.
"We are starting our fast from today and it will continue. The government is alleging that we are deviating from our aim but it is the government that is moving away from its path.
Our main demand is to get the Jan Lokpal Bill passed. Till all the 15 corrupt ministers are sitting in parliament, Lokpal Bill will not be passed," he added.eanwhile, 15 protesters at the venue, who have been fasting since July 25, were hospitalised this morning.n Chennai, a hundred activists of India Against Corruption were arrested after they held protests outside Home Minister P Chidambaram's residence.
Earlier on Saturday, Hazare attacked the Congress and BJP, saying the country's future does not lie safe in their hands and talked about the need for a political alternative in the 2014 elections, during which he will campaign for those with clean background selected by the people.
He had, however, declared he would not contest elections or form a party.
This is the fourth indefinite fast by Hazare since April last year. The April fast was followed by one in Ramlila Maidan here in August and at Azad Maidan in Mumbai in December.
In between, he had single-day fasts in Delhi thrice-in June and December last year and March this year. (ANI)
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