Won’t tour with Baba Ramdev: Anna Hazare

Following unease within Team Anna over his planned joint rally with Baba Ramdev, Anna Hazare said he would not tour the country with the yoga guru.

Zeenews Bureau

New Delhi: Following unease within Team Anna over his planned joint rally with Baba Ramdev in New Delhi on June 3, Anna Hazare on Monday said he would not tour the country with the yoga guru.

"Right now, for over a month, I will tour Maharashtra. He has our support in his campaign against black money and we have his support on Jan Lokpal. We are all fighting together on tackling corruption," Hazare said.

He added that during the all-India tour, he and Ramdev will share stage wherever they meet. However, Hazare added that there will be no joint tour.

Team Anna member and lawyer Prashant Bhushan said, "We have begun a movement against corruption and on that pretext, Ramdev supports us but we have no common platform or any consensus.”

He added, "We do have a consensus regarding these issues and common concerns regarding the country."

Kiran Bedi too has said that the two campaigns were independent. She however added that Hazare and Ramdev could combine their voices against graft.

"We believe that if the corrupt can come together, then those who oppose them, can also join hands," she said.

Reports had earlier said that several members of Team Anna were against joining forces with Baba Ramdev. A section of the activists believe the yoga guru has a "credibility crisis" due to allegations levelled against him.

The issue was reportedly also discussed at yesterday’s core committee meet in Noida.

The meeting, however, became a talking point for another rift that emerged yesterday.

Team member Mufti Shamoon Qasmi was asked to stay away from the proceedings after he was reportedly found recording discussions during the meeting on his mobile phone and transmitting it outside.

Team Anna was discussing the group`s future strategies, including their alliance with Baba Ramdev, when Qasmi was reportedly found recording the proceedings.

In his reaction, Hazare said that there is no fallout over the issue.

"There is no rift. What rift are you talking about? A team member who leaked information yesterday, there was a problem. People in our team had asked why he did so. So he said he would not come back," he told reporters.

"If there was a rift, they would have been fighting and there is no fallout," Hazare said.

Kazmi has claimed he quit the camp as the group was turning anti-Muslim.

Arvind Kejriwal said Qasmi had been caught "red-handed" just like Swami Agnivesh, who was found relaying the details of meetings of Team Anna to ministers in the government at the peak of Hazare`s fast at Ramlila Grounds in Delhi last year.

Asked whether Qasmi was expelled from the meeting, Team Anna member Kumar Vishwas said that he was only asked to leave the meeting for some time.

"It is his decision to leave the movement or not. We have just asked him not to attend the meeting for some time," he added.