Hazare criticises Centre for formulating policies in interest of foreign companies

Guwahati, Nov 8: Anti-graft crusader Anna Hazare lashed at the Centre for formulating policies, which are aimed at protecting the interest of foreign companies and considered it as the biggest threat to the nation.

While addressing a rally in Guwahati, Assam, on Thursday, Hazare slammed the government for not working for the welfare of the farmers.

“After independence it was essential to formulate a policy in the interest of the farmers. But the government is formulating policies in the interest of the foreign companies instead of the farmers. It is the biggest threat to the nation,” said Hazare.

Fed up with the numerous multi-billion dollar scams uncovered in government, and the constant need to pay bribes for free public services, thousands took to the streets in August 2011, as Hazare and anti-graft activist Arvind Kejriwal and other activists such as former top cop Kiran Bedi – the first woman to join the Indian police service – held a series of hunger strikes and protests in New Delhi and elsewhere

Over the past year, India has been transfixed by a campaign led by Anna Hazare to force the government to create an ombudsman, which would prosecute corrupt politicians and bureaucrats.

Hazare’s initial hunger strike brought millions of sympathisers out on streets and forced the government into a series of humiliating U-turns.

Hazare said that miserable performance of the ruling Congress party was a result of backing out to bring the Lokpal bill.

As part of anti-graft movement, Hazare said that new movement initiated by the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti would provide a new direction to the country.

“I want to thank Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS). The movement that you initiated in Assam for land and water resources will give direction to the country. It has been 65 years since independence, what is the condition of the farmers in a country, which is an agricultural economy. What is their state?,” he added.

Meanwhile, the India Against Corruption movement IAC movement, launched in December 2010, marked the first time in India that both the poor and the middle classes were united against corruption in such large numbers.

But 18 months on, India Against Corruption (IAC) – a popular movement led by a group of the country’s prominent social activists – have split due to the decision by some members to move from activism into politics.

Hazare said that he will tour the whole nation with an aim to awaken the masses about spiralling corruption and urge them to root it out.

“I will tour the entire country from January and visit every state and awaken the people on corruption, Right to Information, Right to reject, these laws which we are fighting for are two sides of the same coin,” Hazare stated.

Earlier in the year, Hazare had threatened to start another movement for passage of a strong public ombudsman bill to combat graft in the country, before the national polls, which are scheduled to take place in 2014.

However, many political experts believe that had the Congress brought the Jan Lokpal bill (Public Ombudsman bill) then they would have not failed so badly in the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections nor would they have faced electoral drubbing in Goa and Punjab assembly polls.

India’s image as an investment destination was dented over the past year as the economy slowed, government reforms stalled and the telecom scandals along with high profile graft cases heightened concerns about government policies. (ANI)