Monday, July 30, 2012

On Day 6, Team Anna strikes a militant note

NEW DELHI, July 31, 2012

Striking a militant note, Team Anna ended the sixth day of its protest at Jantar Mantar here on Monday, taking strong exception to a reported statement by Minister of State in the PMO V. Narayanasamy alleging divisions within Team Anna.

However, Mr. Narayanasamy told The Hindu that he had not made any comments about any individual. "All I said was that Parliament will decide on the Lokpal Bill and that Parliament is supreme. I did not take any name. They [Team Anna members] are trying to provoke people."

Citing the Minister's reported comments, an outraged Kiran Bedi asked Delhiites to take to the streets on Tuesday and said it was time for people to show their anger.

"Let us all assemble here on Tuesday. We will think up ways to show our anger, but we should do it non-violently. We are not going to let any more of our brothers who are fasting here to be taken to hospital. We will not let our countrymen continue to remain poor. Every 10 minutes we will call out the names of these 15 corrupt Ministers and shout slogans against them. We will not let news channels spread lies. Are we going to protest here or spend time trying to counter the lies that are being told on TV? Tomorrow we will decide that we are not going to remain doormats anymore. Go home today peacefully but with anger in your hearts. All Delhiwalas should come out on the streets tomorrow, so that the country can have a good anti-corruption law," Ms. Bedi said.

She appealed to the judiciary to take up suo motu India Against Corruption (IAC)'s demand for a Special Investigation Team to probe the allegations against the 15 Ministers.

Following her speech, Manish Sisodhia alleged that Mr. Narayanasamy was spreading lies about Mr. Hazare and that the Minister had alleged that he did not want to sit on a fast this time.

Mr. Hazare, who spoke afterwards, said: "If the Minister in the PMO tells such lies, what will happen to the country?" He alleged that Mr. Narayanasamy had written a letter to him and delivered it to his team in an attempt to break their unity. "But I had my doubts. When I asked Mr. Narayanasamy what would happen to the Bill already passed in the Lok Sabha he had no answer," Mr. Hazare alleged. "I challenge Narayanasamy and Salman Khurshid [Law Minister] to sit with me and I will show that they have lied."

On the second day of his fast, Mr. Hazare said: "The way this wave of protest against corruption is building up in the country, I get the feeling that the Government would have to bring in a strong Lokpal Bill or it will have to go."
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