Citizens' forum PNS seeks Ramdev's nod for clean candidates
Disciples of yoga guru involved in graft fight say they expect him in city next month to inspire and bless candidates shortlisted by Pune Nagrik Sanghatana
Baba Ramdev's agitation might have been disrupted by the police at the Ram Lila grounds in Delhi early in June this year, but that does not mean he has given up his fight against corruption.
Now, the newly formed Pune Nagrik Sanghatana (PNS) has decided to get the yoga guru's nod for clean candidates shortlisted by it before they contest the PMC poll in February.
Ramdev Baba and Anna Hazare. Followers of the two anti-corruption crusaders have decided that the best way to take the movement forward is to get non-corrupt people into politics. File PICS
Ramdev's disciples and other activists in the city had taken his agitation forward and formed the citizens' forum PNS two months ago to promote clean candidates in elections.
Ramdev's disciples now expect their guru to pay the city a one-day visit next month to bless the chosen candidates.
After the nationwide anti-corruption wave triggered by the recent agitations by social activist Anna Hazare and Ramdev, their followers decided the best way to take the movement forward was to get non-corrupt people into politics.
Towards this end, the Bharat Swabhiman Trust, a charitable organisation run by Ramdev's disciples, decided to join hands with social activists, NGOs and RTI activists for the upcoming civic elections.
Vijay Warudkar, coordinator, Bharat Swabhiman Trust, Pune, said, "Baba believes in non-violence and uses a democratic approach to fight against the corrupt UPA government.
We have requested him to spare some time for the PNS, and especially to speak about his guidelines. Elections are the only means to fight against the corrupt government and Pune is the first place where clean candidates will get Baba's nod."
Baba will oblige
Even though Ramdev has not formally announced his plans, members of the Bharat Swabhiman Trust are confident he will oblige them and come to the city.
Ramdev's followers will also be inviting Hazare to grace the occasion on behalf of the PNS and the Bharat Swabhiman Trust. "Our idea is to invite both of them on the same dais, if possible," said Warudkar.
Ramesh Agarwal, coordinator PNS said, "Our first phase is to shortlist clean candidates who are willing to contest on behalf of the PNS and endorse the ideas of Baba Ramdev. After Diwali, we will appeal to the shortlisted people to contest the PMC election.
Personalities like former IAS officer Arun Bhatiya, Avinash Dharmadhikari and Colonel Jayant Chitale (Retired), founder president of Maharashtra Military Foundation, are already involved in the process."
Grand Diwali celebrations
The PNS and Baba Ramdev's disciples have planned a massive Deepotsav celebration on November 6, which is scheduled to be held at Nanasaheb Peshwe Samadhi spot near the Mutha river.
Veteran social activist Sindhutai Sapkal will address the gathering and also felicitate some citizens for their contribution to society. Several NGOs and environmentalists groups will also be participating in the celebrations.