New Delhi: Even as Anna Hazare’s indefinite fast to fight graft entered the seventh day on Monday, Team Anna asserted that they had no intention to topple the government but defended Anna`s remarks that it should go if the bill is not passed by August 30.
"We have been repeating that our motive is not to topple the government. If the government is so insensitive even on
the seventh day of protest and mass gathering, they are saying we will protect corruption and shelter the corrupt...so what is wrong if Hazare said this," key member of Team Anna Arvind Kejriwal said.
Addressing media persons today in the morning, he said, "The Prime Minister tells you people (media) that they
are ready for talks. But we are asking again and again where do we come? Whom do we meet?"
With tens of thousands of people continuing to pour in the Ramlila ground, Arvind Kejriwal reiterated that they “had not got any concrete proposal from the government and that there was no point in reacting until we get concrete proposal from them.”
Arvind Kejrewal categorically said, “The future strategy is for the government to tell. Right now there is nothing on the agenda. Nobody has approached us.”
Giving an update on Anna Hazare’s health, he said that the Gandhian had lost five kilograms till now and ketone particles have been found in his blood
and urine. Ketone particles may affect vital organs like kidney and liver.
Nonetheless, he assured everyone that there was nothing to worry about as of
now. "He is fine," he said.
Back channels talks on
Yesterday, the civil society group had rejected a peace formula proposed by the government. Team Anna had said that proposal did not meet any of their demands.
Waving a sheet of paper at the Ramlila Maidan, Arvind Kejriwal had said that there was nothing new in the government proposal and so it was unacceptable to the team.
Kejriwal had also dismissed media reports of an agreement reached between the civil society and government, terming them as false.
Indore-based spiritual leader Baiyujji Maharaj, who had held talks with Hazare in the morning, had also confirmed that no agreement had been reached between the two sides.
Government sources said Baiyujji Maharaj, who had also met Union minister Kapil Sibal, has emerged as a main negotiator between the government and Team Anna.
Meanwhile, according to reports, the government is working hard to make peace with the civil society group which is fighting for a strong Lokpal and has received unprecedented nationwide support.
Sources said the government is going to have further deliberations on the proposal when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh returns to the national capital from Kolkata.
The government, which is trying to work upon a middle ground, is likely to make an announcement on the issue in Parliament on Tuesday, said sources.
The government has already said that it has started a dialogue process with Team Anna at various levels to end the impasse over the contentious Lokpal Bill.
Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Harish Rawat said on Sunday, "The dialogue process has already been initiated at various levels through well-wishers. This dialogue is at various levels which is not parallel to each other but complimentary to each other," Rawat said.
Also, a senior Maharashtra government official thrice met Gandhian Anna Hazare at the Ramlila Maidan.
Maharashtra Additional Chief Secretary Umesh Chandra Sarangi first visited Hazare on Saturday night and then again on Sunday.
Team Anna ruled out any compromise on its demand for bringing Prime Minister and higher judiciary within Lokpal`s ambit.
Anna Hazare, who had earlier expressed his willingness to have a dialogue on the Lokpal issue with the government, upped the ante on Sunday night when he warned of "unprecedented revolution" in the country if Lokpal Bill is not passed by August 30. Raising his voice, he had said that the government will have to "either get the Bill passed or go".
Meanwhile, police enhanced the security at Ramlila ground
this morning by deploying additional personnel, including a
woman unit of the CRPF.
A senior police official looking after security
arrangements said CRPF and Delhi Police personnel have been
asked to keep a tight vigil and ask for identity cards in
case of suspicion.
However, the CRPF personnel deployed at the ground are
not armed even with `lathis` leave alone weapons.
The police is also frisking all protestors and visitors
who have entered the ground from various entry gates.