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Anna Hazare calls for nation-wide fast

Saturday April 02, 2011 07:54:05 AM, IANS

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New Delhi: After discussions between activists and government representatives on the anti-graft Lokpal bill failed to reach a discussion, veteran activist Anna Hazare has called upon the nation to observe a fast April 5.

"We are appealing to the whole nation to observe a day of fast on 5th April and pray to whoever God one believes in, for a corruption free India. Let the whole nation pray against corruption," Hazare said in a letter to leaders of all political parties.

"I shall be sitting on an indefinite fast from April 5 at Jantar Mantar in Delhi to persuade the government to enact the Jan Lokpal Bill, which is a strong anti-corruption law drafted by some of the best brains in the country including Justice Santosh Hegde, Arvind Kejriwal, Prashant Bhushan, Shanti Bhushan and many others," he said.

Hazare had announced Feb 26 that he would go on an indefinite fast if the government did not include the civil society in the formulation of the anti-graft Lokpal Bill by April 4.

Even as representatives from the activists met the members of a recently formed sub-committee on the Lokpal Bill led by Defence Minister A. K. Antony, no conclusion could be reached.

The activists have been saying that the anti graft bill cannot be drafted by political leaders and bureaucrats as it is supposed to be against them and urged the government to include civil society members in the process of forming the bill.

They have formulated their version of the bill, named the Jan-Lokpal bill.

Forwarding support to the campaign, former Indian cricket captain Kapil Dev also wrote to prime minister urging him to take action against corruption.

"If anyone indulges in corruption, he must visit with exemplary punishment. Under the existing anti corruption laws, there is little possibility of anyone being penalised," Dev said in his letter.





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