As the Opposition parties, which recently shared the dais with Anna Hazare demanding a strong Lokpal, did a U-turn yesterday by asking the government to not to pass the Lokpal in haste, the anti-graft crusader reiterated his stand on going on a hunger strike from December 27 and launching a nationwide Jail Bharo Andolan from January 1.
Waiting for Anna's command: The agitation will start by creating public
awareness about the Jan Lokpal Bill and the venue for the hunger
strike on December 27 will be Balgandharv Rangamandir junction.
The 74-year-old Gandhian is getting overwhelming response from across the country, including the city and its adjoining areas. Hundreds of members of more than 70 social organisations in the district have pledged support to Anna's anti-graft movement and 'are ready to lay down their lives at Anna's command'.
Activists from Bhrashtachar Virodhi Jan Andolan Trust (BVJAT), a social organisation founded by Anna that has 34 branches across the state, have declared to support for the movement.
K D Pawar, President, BVJAT, Pune, said, "We are getting overwhelming response from various social organisations in the city and its adjoining rural areas. So far, 70 such organisations have officially declared their intention to be with Anna and participate in the final fight for getting the Jan Lokpal Bill approved," he said. "Before finalising on the action plan of the hunger strike and 'Jail Bharo Andolan', we would like to know how the Lokpal bill is being presented and discussed in the Lok Sabha during the winter session. We will till December 23," Pawar pointed out.
"There is no doubt that the Jail Bharo Andolan shall be a great success and our activists will flood Yerawada Central Prison. We are still hopeful that Jan Lokpal bill is approved as there is immense public pressure on the government," he said. The agitation will start by creating public awareness about the Jan Lokpal Bill. "We plan to hold street-corner meetings across the city to senitise people," Pawar said.
BVJAT Publicity Officer Shankar Tadakhe, who has just returned from Delhi, said the participating organisations include Bahujan Bhimsena, Krantiveer Lahuji Shakti Sena, Dalit Ekta Andolan, Vande Mataram Sanghatana, Sarahad and many more.
"Even Bharatiya Rickshaw Sena run by Nana Kshirsaagar had extended their support for the movement and shown readiness to go to jail for the agitation," he added. B B Somani, city co-ordinator, India Against Corruption (IAC), the organisation spearheading the anti-graft movement, said, "We have a total 150 active volunteers in Pune and expecting an overwhelming support from Punekars, including students, in the city."
Balgandharv Rangamandir junction on J M Road will serve as the venue of the agitation from December 27. "We shall not shy away from Jail Bharo Andolan ," he assured. A preliminary meeting of the IAC is scheduled today in Mumbai where the future course of action shall be finalised subsequently.