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Anna Hazare free to fast, but in accordance with law: Congress

August 12, 2011 - New Delhi

Ahead of Anna Hazare's indefinite hunger-strike from August 16 to protest the version of the Lokpal Bill drafted by the government, Congress leader Satyavrat Chaturvedi on Friday said the social activist is free to fast, but in accordance with the law.

"If Anna Hazare wants to fast, he can do so according to his own will. It does not really matter if people oppose or support him. The government has made adequate arrangements. It is upto him if he wants to leave eating food, air or water. He is free to do whatever he wants to do, but it has to be within the purview of the law. If he does anything illegal, strict action would be taken against him," Chaturvedi told mediapersons here.

Meanwhile, extending his full support to Hazare's campaign against corruption, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson Syed Shahnawaz Hussain said the UPA Government is highly corrupt and scared of anti-corruption movements that have gripped the country.

"The ruling Congress Party is scared and highly intimidated by Anna Hazare. Congress Party is highly corrupt and wary of Hazare's movement against corruption. It is not working in favour of anti-corruption movements in the country," he said.

Delhi Police has suggested the civil society activists to hold their fast at the Jayaprakash Narayan National Park, which is close to the Ferozeshah Kotla Grounds. Anna Hazare was earlier denied permission to hold his fast at the Jantar Mantar citing law and order situation.

The much-debated Lokpal Bill, which aims to set up an anti-corruption watchdog in the country, was tabled in the Lok Sabha on August 4.

Hazare and his supporters, however, burnt copies of the Lokpal Bill in several cities later, claiming that the anti-corruption legislation tabled in its present form in Parliament, would not be able to deal with corruption.

The proposed legislation introduced in the Lok Sabha doesn't cover the Prime Minister within the purview of the ombudsman during his or her term in office. But once the Prime Minister demits the office, he or she may be investigated for any wrongdoing during the term.


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