Anna phenomenon captures world’s attention

It is not just Indian media which is constantly covering the anti-corruption movement led by Anna Hazare.

Zeenews Bureau

New Delhi: It is not just Indian media which is constantly covering the anti-corruption movement led by Anna Hazare, but the international media is also tracking the protests widely.

The leading international news websites, newspapers are carrying full coverage right from Anna’s arrest to massive nationwide demonstrations that ensued and his release deal with the Indian Government. In fact, some of the reports compared India`s biggest anti-corruption icon to Mahatma Gandhi.

An editorial appeared in the Dawn advised Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to realise that many in his country are beginning to peacefully rise against corruption, adding that the "time may have come for the same sort of dissent in Pakistan".

"The question now is: will concrete action be taken in a country that touts itself as a modern, secular democracy? Will the recent episodes, which started with the award of telecommunication contracts, be `red-washed` in bureaucratic tape? Do key figures in the Indian administration have too much to lose if the truth comes out in its entirety?,” the editorial asked.

In an article, Washington Times said, “Mr Hazare, a 73-year-old social activist clad in the simple white cotton garb of India`s liberation leaders, has become an anti-corruption icon by channelling the tactics of freedom fighter Mohandas K Gandhi.“

The BBC not just covered the developments in Delhi extensively but also visited the Maharashtra’s Ralegan Siddhi “to find out more about a movement that is unsettling the government”. On its website, it also reported on how effective is a hunger strike as a political statement?

Wall Street Journal notes in an article, “A cornered government lashes out, at one point breaking up a large, peaceful demonstration with baton-wielding police, at another jailing an activist who has tapped popular resentment against the status quo.” The article further dismisses the parallels being made between India’s anti-graft protests and the movement that has swept across the Middle East.

Daily Mail, meanwhile, analyses that “Hazare`s demand for tougher anti-corruption laws has galvanised Indians fed up with the bribery and favouritism that has infested government at all levels and become a political distraction, preventing progress in addressing the widening gap between rich and poor."

The public support for Anna is pouring in from every nook and corner of the country. The “modern-day Mahatma” is to begin his agitation at Ramlila Maidan.

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