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BJP aligns itself with Baba Ramdev


June 16, 2011 - Hyderabad

Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader M. Venkaiah Naidu alleging that the Congress Government is behind corruption in the country, on Thursday said the party fully supports the anti-graft movement of yoga guru Baba Ramdev.

"The Congress is behind corruption. We are behind Baba Ramdev, we are proud to be," he said.

Ramdev ended his nine-day-long fast, undertaken to press his demand for bringing back black money stashed away in foreign banks, and to step up war against corruption, on Sunday after being persuaded to do so by a host of spiritual leaders, including Art of Living Guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and Morari Bapu.

However, Ramdev and the spiritual leaders said that their campaign against corruption and return of black money from abroad would continue.

The yoga guru had been on a hunger strike against corruption along with 65,000 followers when the Delhi Police on the Central Government's orders cracked down on their camp late on the night of June 4 in New Delhi's Ramlila Maidan.

Further commenting on the Lokpal Bill, Naidu said: "The government is not serious. It has no commitment; it has no political will that is why it's buckling like this. Let us see what is going to happen."

With no consensus being reached between government and civil society representatives during their sixth joint drafting committee meeting on the Lokpal Bill, Gandhian Anna Hazare today threatened to resort to another agitation if a strong anti-corruption bill was not passed.

"If a weak bill is formed, then it will be of no benefit for the society and the country, so what is the use of sanctioning such a draft? It seems that the agitation of Jantar Mantar that was ended needs to be revived again. The government is backing out from all the issues," said Hazare.

"They lack the feeling of eradicating corruption from the country; they are not willing to make India a corruption-free country. Poor people are finding it difficult to stay with corruption and the government is not bothered about it," he added.

Hazare earlier this month gave the government a deadline of August 15 to agree to their demands for enactment of the proposed Lokpal Bill.

"If the Lokpal Bill is not passed, I will go on fast again from August 16 at Jantar Mantar. If the government does not listen I shall fast till I breathe my last," he said.

Emphasizing that this is the new independence war against corruption, Hazare said: "In 1947 we just got independence but not real independence so we are striving for new independence."

He had earlier gone on a five-day-long fast in April till the government conceded the demand for a strong anti-Lokpal Bill.

ANI

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