Anna Hazare to launch 'Asli Azadi Abhiyan' on August 9

Jaipur: Accusing both ruling and opposition parties of collecting unaccounted donations during elections, Anna Hazare on Friday announced that he would launch "Asli Azadi Abhiyan (Real Freedom Movement)" from Mumbai on August 9, on the anniversary of the Quit India Movement.

The social activist said consultation programmes will be held in nine major cities covering nearly 660 districts and two representatives each will be selected for attending a lecture in memory of late sarvodaya leader Siddharaj Dhadda before August 9.

Interested people, mainly youths, will be engaged in the movement during the consultation programmes to be held at nine cities including Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai and Delhi, said Hazare, accompanied by Rajendra Singh, a Magsaysay Award winning water conservationist.

"Hame azadi toh mili 1947 mein, par nakli azadi mili (We got Independence in 1947, but it was a false freedom)," Hazare said, adding both the ruling and opposition parties exploited the people, grabbed their lands, indulged in corruption, violence and loot.

In the name of election funds, the parties are collecting huge unaccounted donations turning black money into white, and spending them in parts so that the Election Commission cannot object to it, he claimed.

Asli Azadi Abhiyan will put pressure on the government to have audit of election funds and black money given to both the ruling and opposition parties which are spending crores of rupees in Lok Sabha polls, he said.

The movement will also ask the government to form a separate institution like the Lokpal to contain this illegal flow of black money, Hazare said.

The movement will not be a momentary one as it will go on for next five to 15 years till its demand for "asli azadi" was met, he stressed.

"Satta ki naak dabane se moonh khulta hai (press the nose of the government to get its mouth opened)," he said.

Quoting Mahatma Gandhi's ideology of 'gram swaraj', the social activist said the government should also bring change in economy of villages instead of cities, and added villages had been neglected leading to migration of youths to big cities in search of jobs and education.

Hazare alleged that the existing political parties had exploited youths in colleges and universities on the caste lines and hence purification of politics and its process was a must in next five years.

When reminded that there would be a new government on May 16, probably led by BJP's Narendra Modi, Hazare said, "Whosoever comes to power, does not bother me... Will Modi set up a Lokayukta in Gujarat, whether he sets up a strong 'gram sabha' there and attempted to decentralised power?"

Asked whether AAP's Arvind Kejariwal cheated him by forming a political party and used him as a ladder, Hazare said, "No one can deceit me... Media's role cannot be denied in making him a political person... I live a simple life in a temple... I have not lost anything."

Asked if anyone from his new movement forms a political front, Hazare, who led an anti-corruption movement leading to the rise of Aam Aadmi Party, said, "We will be more careful this time for the first few years... Will do screening of members. We have taken Kejariwal's 'palayan (exit)' as an example".

Whether it was yoga guru Baba Ramdev or any political person, everyone has indulged in collecting donation, allegations were mounted on everyone of them, he replied to another question.

Earlier speaking on the occasion, former Union minister Arif Mohammed Khan laid stress on the need to aware citizens of their rights and duties so that social and political reforms could be brought in future.

Among others who addressed the lecture series included by Magsaysay Award winning water conservationist Rajendra Singh and social activist PV Rajgopal.

PTI
First Published: Saturday, April 19, 2014, 00:42
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