An open letter to Anna Hazare
Thanks for writing to us (countrymen) cautioning against the divisive powers which are working to divide the anti-graft movement by spreading misinformation and propaganda. But Annaji, you must be aware that those who have openly critiqued the movement were not the jholawala types surrounding you in the guise of “civil activists”, but seasoned writers, intellectuals, political observers and erudite scholars passionate about Indian Democracy and its progress.
You have appealed to the people to ignore any kind of rumours Annaji, but those critical points cannot be brushed aside as rumours, as they have been made in the interest of the nation with clear evidences. Please be aware of the fact that your movement against corruption is seen with suspicion because of the jholawala brigade surrounding you. Let me take the liberty of reminding you of the old saying, “One is known by the company one keeps”. And what a company you have Annaji!
A “dubious Swami” who openly supports anti-nationals such as Maoists, Kashmiri separatists and Christian aggressors who wreak havoc in remote villages, tribal areas and coastal hamlets, indulging in conversion activities; an “RTI Activist” with a dubious track record of running NGOs without any accountability or transparency; a “dancer & social activist” who was allegedly involved in robbing innocent dancers in the guise of sending them abroad; a woman police officer who has not achieved anything, not even regular service awards, except the “distinction” of being the First Woman Police Officer of India; a “Social Activist” who thrives on instigating innocent people to riot against developmental projects and who has been indicted by Courts of Law in India including the Supreme Court for illegality and shady activities; yet another “Activist” whose NGO was thoroughly exposed in the VIGIL Book “NGOs, Activists and Foreign Funds: Anti- Nation Industry” (1). Being a socially conscious person, why didn’t you check their antecedents Annaji? Or did you think it did not matter?
With such characters supporting you, you are bound to face questions and criticisms Annaji, and you cannot reject them as rumours. As “leader” of the movement, you are responsible and you must clarify doubts arising in the minds of the fellow countrymen who are “blindly” following you.
Here are some more questions for you, in the hope that you would at least introspect if not willing to give a candid reply.
- A columnist of a reputed newspaper has said it was Arvind Kejriwal who prodded you two months ago to lead this fight for Jan Lokpal Bill (2). So why didn’t you start a separate movement then? Why did you go and join Swami Ramdev’s Bharat Swabhiman Andholan? Were you forced by Kejriwal and other “activists” to attend Baba Ramdev’s massive rally on 27 February? Did you announce your “Fast unto Death” plan there on the instruction of those activists?
- Between 27 February and 5 April you were not to be seen on the national scene Annaji. Why? A famous blogger has questioned the timing of your hunger strike (3). Can you give a convincing answer? Was the timing also decided by the “Activists”?
- In your letter to the Prime Minister, Annaji, you have mentioned that UPA-2 has shown complete contempt for even the most innocuous issues raised by the National Advisory Council (NAC) and you have also asked the government to accept the recommendations of the NAC sub-committee on Jan Lokpal Bill. In other words, you have literally batted for NAC. Why Annaji? What is the difference you perceive between UPA, Congress Party and NAC? Please don’t tell us you are not aware that all three are headed and controlled by Sonia Gandhi.
- As a crusader against corruption for so many decades, you must know the Bofors Scam and the persons involved in it; you must also be aware of the huge scams coming into the limelight one after another from the dark cabinets of UPA, presided over by Sonia. How and why did you bat for Sonia’s NAC in your letter to PM? Was the letter written by you or did you simply sign a letter drafted by “activists”?
- In your latest letter to us countrymen, you have mentioned that your hunger strike was not aimed against any government or person, but was the people’s voice against corruption. Why Annaji? Don’t you feel this government is the most brazenly corrupt government in independent India? Why didn’t you ask for speedy trial of CWG, 2G, Adarsh and other scams? When you are leading a fight against corruption, is it not your duty to highlight the various scams involving the present government, especially in your letter to the Prime Minister? Why should you go out of the way and say that your movement was not against any government or person?
- Because of your insistence and also because you have been steadfastly against him in Maharashtra, Sharad Pawar quit the GoM. But you seem happy to accept Pranab Mukherjee and P. Chidambaram, who have been castigated in your presence as corrupt, by none other than your colleague in the movement, former Income Tax Commissioner Vishwabandhu Gupta. Why this soft corner towards Congress and cold shoulder to NCP? Why you didn’t demand the inclusion of opposition leaders in the draft committee Annaji? Don’t you realize the opposition plays a significant role in parliamentary democracy and that its support is needed in parliament to pass the Lokpal Bill? Did the jholawala brigade prevent you from making such a demand?
- Coming to the composition of members of Lokpal, Annaji, why you have not considered the Chief Vigilance Commissioner and why you are specific about Nobel and Magsaysay awardees? What is so important about those awarded by foreign organizations?
- It seems you were not satisfied projecting yourself as a “Gandhian” and want to proclaim your “secular” credentials too! Hence you said “repeated” clarifications on your opinion about Narendra Modi “pained” you. You took pains to repeat the statement uttered by Kejriwal into your ears about Modi being “communal”; you took pains to send a written reply to the activist-dancer who objected to your appreciating Modi for the development milestones achieved in Gujarat; you took pains to clarify your position vis-à-vis Modi on “communal” aspect when confronted with another letter from a bunch of Gujarat-based jholawalas called Lok Andolan to Maoist sympathiser Agnivesh.
- But you never had the courtesy to reply to Mr. Modi, who not only appreciated your efforts wholeheartedly and thanked you respectfully, but also warned you of a vilification campaign by these very same people. Why Annaji? Did you think you would be dubbed ‘communal’ if you replied to Modi?
- Congress goons massacred more than 3000 Sikhs across the country in 1984. But you bat for Sonia and her NAC and don’t seem to bother about supporting or communicating with Congress. Annaji, do you mean Congress is not communal?
- You said you appreciated Modi for the development of Gujarat based on Media reports. Have you not seen media reports about 100-odd Muslims winning local body elections on BJP tickets? Have you not seen media reports on Muslims voting for Modi in large numbers in consecutive elections? Why didn’t you have the courage to tell the jholawala brigade that you stand by your opinion on Modi, that he was not communal and that Gujarati Muslims are the happiest lot when compared with Muslims of other states?
- More than a dozen states including your Maharashtra have Lokayuktas, but not Modi’s Gujarat. You must know how Maharashtra is doing in the august presence of yourself and a Lokayukta. However, with just the existing laws, Modi was able to achieve corruption-free governance reducing corruption to the barest minimum while other states couldn’t achieve even a fraction of this. As a leader of the so-called anti-corruption movement, you should have appreciated Modi for this. Yet you chose to demand constitution of a Lokayukta without even knowing that it was the Sonia-led Congress party which creates obstacles in the formation of a Lokayukta in Gujarat. Annaji will you show some courage by asking Sonia to cooperate with Modi in forming the Lokayukta in Gujarat?
- The monumental scams and corruption involving UPA ministers have been tumbling out of the closet. There is a lot of noise by nationalists who are more credible than the jholawala brigade surrounding you on Black Money stashed in tax havens across the globe. You have kept silent on this, Annaji. Why not ask the UPA government to ratify the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC), which would free our investigating agencies and facilitate investigations on foreign soil? Since you have so much confidence in Sonia (‘If Sonia orders the Government our remaining demands will be met’), why not ask her to prevail upon the UPA to ratify UNCAC? Once the investigating agencies are freed, we may not even require a “Lokpal”, Annaji.
- When Baba Ramdev objected to the presence of a father-son duo in the draft committee, you silenced him. Annaji, wasn’t it proper to have only one Bhushan in the committee? Are there no equally good and even better legal luminaries? Are you aware that Prashant Bhushan, with Sandeep Pandey, attended a “National Political Conference” organized by the terror outfit Popular Front of India (PFI) in Kozhikode during February 13-15, 2009? (4). Will you demand an explanation from him? And in the wake of new controversies about the Bhushans, will you demand explanations from them?
- You have been confined to Maharashtra for years. Suddenly you have become nationally famous! How? Isn’t it because you joined Baba Ramdev’s Movement against corruption? Are you not aware that Baba Ramdev has been singularly responsible for creating a genuine movement against corruption in government and black money stashed in tax havens? Who advised you to usurp the movement from Swami Ramdev? It was the jholawala brigade, wasn’t it?
- Was it not because of this fact that you uttered the “infamous” statement, “The most significant thing about this movement was that it had no religion”? Annaji, what made you utter this? Are you not aware that Baba Ramdev has been instrumental in uniting the people of this great nation across castes and religions, against corruption? Didn’t you see the Muslim and Christian clergies at his rally?
- Or was the statement pointed at the saffron clad Hindu Yoga Guru, indirectly asking him to stay away from your “secular” show for the future? In that case, Annaji, can we take it that you have hijacked the anti-corruption movement from Baba Ramdev at the behest of Sonia’s minions who are surrounding you in the guise of “Civil Society” representatives?
- Last but not the least Annaji, what is your take on the Reports of Justice P.B. Sawant Commission which inquired various complaints against you and found maladministration and misappropriation in NGOs connected with you?
You have a lot more to explain Annaji.
- The Deccan Herald reported that you have yielded to the demand of the so-called activists to remove the Bharat Mata image from your movement’s pictorial backdrops on the grounds that it signifies “Hinduness” and hence is communal. (5) That is an insult to the nation and if true, Annaji, you have lost the credibility and moral authority to lead a movement like this; you must apologise to the nation and quit.
Any movement against virulent alien forces controlling the pillars of our democracy needs to have Hinduness in its outlook, image, character, thought, word and deed. That is how Rama achieved with the help of Vasishta, Chandra Gupta achieved with the help of Chanakya, and Shivaji achieved with the help of Ramdas.
If you are really concerned about corruption, please ask the jholawala brigade to get lost and leave the mantle to Baba Ramdev, and quit.
This great nation needs a Hindu Rajguru, not a secular Gandhi!
With Warm Regards,
A Concerned Citizen
The company that Hazare keeps
Anna Hazare: The real celebrity
Rajesh Kalra , Thursday April 14, 2011, 06:49 PM
Sandeep Published: April 13, 2011
(4) Tamil Daily “Dinamalar” dated 19 February 2009
New symbol for Hazare’s movement, New Delhi, April 14, DH News Service
(The writer is a senior journalist)
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