Probe how Anna drawing huge support: Congress

Suspecting a "foreign" hand behind Anna Hazare`s anti-graft movement, Congress on Wednesday raised questions on the US` statement that India would exercise "appropriate democratic restraint" in dealing with peaceful protest.

Last Updated: Aug 17, 2011, 19:11 PM IST

New Delhi: Suspecting a "foreign" hand
behind Anna Hazare`s anti-graft movement, Congress on Wednesday raised questions on the US` statement that India would
exercise "appropriate democratic restraint" in dealing with
peaceful protest and asked the government to inquire how a
"lone" civil rights activist is drawing support.

"US never supported any movement in India since its
independence. For the first time, the US said that Anna
Hazare`s movement should be allowed and there should be no
obstruction to it. What was the need for the US to give this
statement?

"It needs to be considered whether there is any power
which is supporting this movement which wants to destabilise
not only the government but the country. We need to take the
statement of the US seriously," party spokesperson Rashid Alvi
told reporters at the AICC briefing.

Asked whether it is the official position of the party
and whether he is saying all this on the party`s behalf as UPA
government has many times in past been attacked by the Left
over an alleged pro-US tilt more so after India signed the
nuclear deal, Alvi said "all that I have said I have said on
behalf of my party."

Asked whether Congress has made preliminary inquiries
before making this allegation suggesting that the US was
behind Anna`s agitation, he said "government should inquire
about it and find out the truth".

Alvi at the same time said "there are some forces also
within the country (that are supporting Hazare`s agitation
from behind), which needs to be found out....I am not
criticising the US or any other country. But we will have
to find out the truth, why US is supporting this movement?"

"Anna is alone. Anna has no organization but only a few
friends standing by him. The big question is how this movement
came into existence? How people in such a large number come
out to support him?" the Congress leader said.

Ahead of the proposed August 16 fast against corruption
by Hazare, the US State Department spokesperson Victorial
Nuland had hoped that India would exercise "appropriate
democratic restraint" in the way it deals with peaceful
protest.

The remarks drew a sharp response from India which termed
as "needless" and after that Nuland had yesterday exuded
confidence in India`s ability to manage its "internal
situation" in consistent with democratic values.

PTI