Social activist Anna Hazare on Monday said he would have no option but to go on a fast unto death from August 16 if the government introduced its own version of the Lok Pal Bill in Parliament without taking suggestions from civil society members.
In a letter addressed to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, he listed out all the scams which have emerged in the past one year. He said none of them came under the purview of the version of the Lok Pal which the government had proposed in its parallel draft. “So what use is such a draft?” he asked in his letter.
Hazare urged the government to be sincere in weeding out corruption and said it should introduce the draft Bill with the suggestions made by him and the civil society.
His letter also urges the Prime Minister to make it a Lok Pal-cum-Lok Ayukta Bill and contested the government’s argument that the states were against it.
He said the matter came under a concurrent list and hence such a Bill could be passed. He also pointed out that Congress-ruled states had expressed their willingness to go along with whatever the Centre proposes.
Later at a press conference, Hazazre said he and his team members were prepared to die, if required, to get the Lok Pal in place. “We would not be intimidated by any threats or oppression,” he said.
The conference was also addressed by Arvind Kejriwal, Prashant Bhushan, Kiran Bedi and Swami Agnivesh. Bhushan and Agnivesh are core members of the Hazare team.
The civil society group expressed satisfaction over surveys being conducted in various constituencies to seek the views of the public on key issues in the Lok Pal Bill.
“If the people oppose what we are saying, we would accept that,” said Arvind Kejriwal on a survey being done in Chandni Chowk, the constituency of Lok Pal drafting committee member Kapil Sibal.