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Lok Bill row: Congress accuses Anna of being involved in corruption cases

August 14, 2011 - New Delhi

Ahead of the veteran social activist's indefinite hunger strike from August 16 to protest the version of the Lokpal Bill drafted by the government, Congress Party accusing Anna Hazare of double standards on Sunday charged him of being involved in several cases of corruption.

"We would like to ask Anna Hazare, with what face are you talking about fast against corruption? You are corrupt yourself. We are not saying this. This is what a high court appointed inquiry has said," said Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari.

"He himself is involved in several cases of corruption. This has been proved by the apex court appointed Justice Sawant Commission. The commission found that Anna runs several NGOs and money was spent illegally for his birthday celebration," he added.

Commenting on Hazare's letter to the Prime Minister seeking his intervention seeking his over the restrictions imposed by Delhi Police on his fast from Aug 16 at the Jayaprakash Narayan National Park in the national capital, Tiwari said: "Anna Hazare has not only insulted the Indian prime minister by saying with what face he will hoist the flag at Red Fort but has insulted the Indian flag and people who gave life for the country's freedom."

Hazare had on Saturday accused the government of betraying the nation's trust by imposing restrictions on his fast and had asked the Prime Minister to intervene.

Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh has disassociated himself from the conditional permission granted by the Delhi Police for Hazare's indefinite hunger strike.

In a reply to Hazare's letter, Dr. Singh said that the conditions were decided by the 'statutory authorities' taking into account the prevailing circumstances and other factors.

"I have received your letter, carrying the date 14th August, 2011 and carefully read its contents. Your grievance that the police has given you permission to protest and go on fast at JP Park only for three days needs to be addressed by the statutory authorities who have taken that decision," Dr. Singh said.

"My Office does not in any way get involved in the decision-making process. The terms and conditions on which you are entitled to carry on with your protest are decided by the statutory authorities concerned taking into account the prevailing circumstances and other relevant factors," he added.

He further requested Hazare to address his grievances to the statutory authorities concerned.

"We are all committed to the Constitution of India and to uphold it both in letter and spirit," he added.

Delhi Police has asked Hazare to submit an undertaking that the agitation would be limited to three days and that not more than 4,000-5,000 people would assemble at the Jayaprakash Narayan Park, venue of the protest.

The police also made it clear that they would not give permission for Hazare's agitation until he gave an undertaking on 22 counts.eam Anna has termed the Delhi Police's restrictions as "unacceptable" and "unconstitutional".


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