Toronto: Non-resident Indians in Canada have come out in support of Gandhian leader Anna Hazare for his fast unto death demanding the enactment of a comprehensive Jan Lokpal bill to eradicate corruption in India.
"We Indo-Canadians fully back Anna Hazare`s action to salvage India`s reputation. The country`s image has been sullied by corruption. Commonwealth Games, 2G and housing society scams are the latest in the long list of big scandals in India. As a person of Indian origin, I am very disturbed and feel ashamed of the rampant corruption in my ancestral land,`` Vancouver-based social activist Balwant Sanghera told a news agency.
"We want to see a great image of our ancestral land and we feel proud every time Indians do well - like this World Cup victory. Being an honest person, Manmohan Singh should quickly accept Hazare`s demand for tough laws to deal with corruption. The whole of India should support Hazare`s fast for a great cause,`` he said.
Supporting Anna Hazare`s fast, former Canadian health minister Ujjal Dosanjh said, "I commend what this great Gandhian is doing and the Indian government should pay heed to his agitation. The kind of support he is getting shows that people are fed up with corruption and looking for a change.``
Dosanjh, who became Canada`s first non-white premier (chief minister) when he was elected to this top post in British Columbia province in 2000, said, "More than laws, India needs to end the culture of corruption. So, I would urge Anna Hazare to start a movement to change Indian values to end the culture of corruption.``
Toronto-based physician Birinder Ahluwalia, who runs one of the biggest diagnostic centres in Canada, said he is saddened that "a progressive country like India is still marred by this social ill.``
Supporting Hazare`s agitation for eradication of corruption, he said, "Corruption is a plague that is hindering India. Almost all developed countires have the lowest corruption Index and boast institutions that are just and fair, and India should learnt from these countries to attain a respectable status in the world.
"By getting rid of corruption, the trickle-down effect of economic miracle that India enjoys today will end and one will then see all Indians benefiting from economic gains and coming generations can boast of a nation that is living true to its potential.``
Former Cricket Canada CEO Atul Ahuja told a news agency: "All Indians should come out in full force to support Anna Hazare. He is rightly saying that anti-corruption laws should be so strong that they put the fear of God in you. Strip the corrupt of all their dignity and make many more examples of Harshad Mehta."
Ahuja said investigative agencies should never be under government control as is the case in India now. "I hope Anna Hazare`s fast is the new beginning for India.``