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Anna aide criticizes Sonia Gandhi for tabling weak Lokpal Bill


December 31, 2011 - Ghaziabad (Uttar Pradesh)

Accusing Congress President Sonia Gandhi of tabling a weak Lokpal Bill in the Parliament, Kumar Vishwas, a close aide of veteran social activist Anna Hazare, today said the UPA Government is acting deaf and dumb and not feeling the pulse of the nation. We do not have any hope from the government, as the government is not paying heed to the biggest mass protest, then country will also have to think whose voice does government listen to. UPA chief Sonia Gandhi had already indicated before the Lokpal was tabled in the Parliament that they will not listen to anyone and will go forward with a weak bill because they have a misconception that with the onset of election the country is divided on the basis of caste and appeasement and is confused between the promises made during election," Vishwas told the media here.

"So, the Congress Party is very confident of the people's habit of forgetting things and will bring them to power once again, or they will do something that will benefit the Congress. So, I think that it is very important for the country to understand that if they want to win the battle then they need to talk in a similar manner as the leaders do," he added.

Expressing concern over the declining health of veteran social activist Anna Hazare, Vishwas said: "Anna Hazare was not eating food three, four days before his hunger strike and I think he needs rest. Scores of people across the nation, who are aspiring to fight against corruption, are thronging to Ralegan so Anna has to meet them. He has to address such people thrice a day, which is very stressful for him."

"But he needs to gear up for a bigger movement, everybody is also planning to how to take our movement to such a level, which would lead to the passage of a strong Lokpal Bill. After what the government has done with Lokpal, the nation needs to tell the government about what they want," he added.

Earlier in the day, former senior police officer and civil society activist Kiran Bedi said the core meeting of the her team members, which was to be held at Anna Hazare's native village Ralegan Siddhi on January 2 and 3, has been postponed due to the ill health of the veteran social activist.

Team Anna that has been mounting pressure on the Centre for the enactment of a strong and effective Lokpal Bill was expected to meet at Anna's village to chalk out its future strategy as the Rajya Sabha failed to pass the anti-graft bill.

Anna Hazare called off his three-day token fast for a strong Lokpal Bill in Mumbai on Wednesday, has threatened the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government that he would campaign against the latter in five poll-bound states for not brining a strong and an effective anti-graft bill. The Jan Lokpal bill drafted by the civil society members led by Hazare had envisaged the setting up of a national anti-corruption watchdog to check financial mismanagement and corrupt practices that have deeply pervaded several democratic and civic institutions of India.

The Lokpal Bill, which was passed by the Lok Sabha on Wednesday was taken up for a discussion and vote in Rajya Sabha. But after a marathon debate that stretched until midnight, the vote failed to take place. The Rajya Sabha was adjourned sine die late night amid uproar created by several MPs, without voting on the bill. The anti-graft legislation for which social activist Anna Hazare and his team have fomented a successful mass movement may now be taken up in the budget session of Parliament, probably in March.

China builds new 700 million Yuan airport on Tibet Plateau|world[Beijing{Beijing, Dec 31 : China has started building a new civil airport in the Mongolian-Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Haixi.

Construction of the 700-million Yuan airport, in northwestern Qinghai province, will be completed by the end of 2013, and it will start operating in June 2014, Yang Yang, deputy chief of the provincial development and reform commission said.

Huatugou Airport is one of three new regional airports to be built in Qinghai before 2020, Yang added.

According to the report, Huatugou Airport will have a 3,600-meter-long runway and will handle flights to the provincial capital of Xining, the cities of Golmud and Delingha in Qinghai, the city of Dunhuang in neighboring Gansu Province, and Korla in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.

By 2020, the airport will handle 90,000 passenger trips annually, Xinhua reports.

The airport, at an altitude of 2,945 meters, is located in a resource-rich region at the juncture of Qinghai and Xinjiang.

Cheng Zhuzu, executive vice president of China West Airport Group said that the new airport 'would help expand the air traffic network on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, and would provide stronger logistic support for exploiting natural resources.'

ANI

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