Stop targetting Rahul Gandhi, Congress leaders warn Anna Hazare

Congress leaders and activists have warned social activist Anna Hazare to stop targetting party general secretary Rahul Gandhi with the backing of the opposition.

"Hazare is attacking him (Rahul Gandhi) for weakening the Lokpal Bill to help vested interests tarnish his image. Congressmen will not tolerate this," said Congress Member of Parliament PV Hanumanth Rao.

Steel Minister Beni Prasad Verma said: "The opposition is scared of Rahul Gandhi and Anna has become their spokesperson, especially that of the RSS. Is he a laat sahab, let him come to UP (elections), we will see him there." He was reacting to Anna Hazare's comments against Gandhi.

"Anna is trying to scare Congress but we are not afraid of him. If he is 75, then Congress is 125-years-old," Verma said.

Congress leader Satyavrat Chaturvedi said, "His (Anna's) word is not the one of Lord Brahma. Is he Satyawadi Harishchandra?, I do not agree with this."

Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh said: "The BJP is supporting Anna Hazare to divert public attention from the fact that Sangh Parivar supporters have been arrested for terrorist activities."

Digvijaya also said Team Anna''s campaign has always been political.

"The intent of Team Anna, Ramdev and Sri Sri Ravishankar is political, their motive is to create problems for the Congress," Digvijaya said.

Law and Justice Minister Salman Khurshid said: "Parliamentary democracy is based on discussion and there should be a discussion on every issue."

Asked whether opposition did the right thing in discussing Lokpal issue outside Parliament, Khurshid said "this should also be discussed in Parliament."

Union Minister for Non-Renewable Energy Sources Farooq Abdullah said: "Parliament is supreme. So, they (Opposition) should put forth their views in Parliament which is the right forum."

Union Agriculture Minister and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar said there was nothing wrong with politicians sharing the dais with Anna Hazare and discussing the Lokpal issue.

It is good that all parties emphasised the supremacy of Parliament which cannot be overlooked. A debate can take place at any place. It could be done at a seminar or in an open ground," Pawar said.

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