Ralegan Siddhi, Ahmednagar: Did the Congress offer the post of President of India to anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare? Yes, if the rumours floating around in this village are to be believed.
As per reports, Thursday, rumours are rife that Anna has been offered the post of President by the Manmohan Singh-led UPA government as the term of the incumbent, Pratibha Patil, is due to end next year.
What has fuelled the speculation is the steady stream of politicians, especially form the Congress, who are making their way to the village to meet the Gandhian. Among those who have paid a visit to Anna Hazare were Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat, Ahmednagar MP Bhausaheb Waghchaure, former PWD minister Vijaysinh Mohite-Patil among others.
Moreover, a vernacular daily had reported that some senior leaders of the Congress had held a meeting in Delhi after the stupendous response Anna garnered during his fast at Ramleela Maidan over the Jan Lokpal Bill. The leaders after discussing the emerging scenario had actively pursued the idea of making Anna Hazare a resident of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Although the veracity of the story is yet to be ascertained, however, the activists associated with the India against Corruption initiative and others close to Anna have rubbished the speculation, saying that he won’t accept any such offer.
Ralegan Siddhi Sarpanch Jaysingh Mapari was quoted as saying by a newspaper that he was confident Hazare would not "fall prey" to any offer of the kind. "Hazare knows the ministers very well after his two big stirs. I don't think any Union minister shall dare make such an offer," he said.
First Published: Thursday, September 29, 2011, 12:03