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Kiran Bedi backs formation of independent CBI to combat corruption

December 26, 2011 - New Delhi

Former senior police officer and civil society activist Kiran Bedi on Monday emphasised on the need to have an independent Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) with an aim to root out corruption from the country.

"We are with the person with the power or the person who wants this country to be corruption free. And to make the country corruption free, we want an independent, non-partisan, non-politically manipulated CBI. Today the whole world has come to know as to what was wrong with this country. It has come out in the open as to why the CBI was shielded all this while," Bedi told the media in New Delhi.

"The CBI was manipulated all this while. Every political party is telling the Parliament that the CBI has been misused. So, if you know the problem, then the solution is with you as well. Give the solution on December 27, 28 and 29," she added, while throwing light on veteran social activist Anna Hazare's three-day fast beginning in Mumbai tomorrow.

Further referring to a recent article in a leading Indian newspaper estimating black money pulled out of India in the last nine years to an amount of US 138 billion dollars, Bedi stated that this shows the need to have a strong law to effectively combat corruption.

"US 138 billion dollars, Rs. 60 trillion, which could have been put in the infrastructure in the last nine years have gone away. We want such a solution and a law system that facilitates an independent premiere Central Bureau of Investigation, where it can investigate independently and there should be no political interference. This is the demand of every Indian today," she added.

Meanwhile, Hazare's close aide Suresh Pathare stated that though Hazare's close aides do not want him to observe the fast due to his failing health, the anti-graft crusader is determined to fight for the cause.

"Since there have been three fasts in a single year so we who are in Ralegan or anybody who loves him would not want him to undergo another fast. So our wish is that he may not do this fast. But it is his utmost wish to fulfil this three days long call that he has given out to the countrymen," he told the media at Anna Hazare's native village Ralegan Siddhi.

Pathare further said Hazare and his supporters would court arrest as a form of protest if the government does not pay heed to their demand during the three days of the fast.

"We have appealed to the people of the country to hold demonstrations in front of the houses of all the lawmakers, who are against the Jan Lokpal bill. After staging demonstrations, they would court arrest to the police. So, Annaji will himself protest in front of the houses of Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi and court arrest," he said.

Team Anna and the government have locked horns over the Lokpal Bill issue, with the former stating that the bill's latest version is 'weak', while the latter says that it has gone out of its way to incorporate the views of all sections of society.

Anna Hazare, who is spearheading the movement for a strong Lokpal, will begin his three-day fast in Mumbai tomorrow to pressurise the government to accept their demands including bringing the CBI under the ambit of the anti-graft legislation.


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