Want to join Anna Hazare? Sign affidavit saying you won't contest polls

Updated: Jul 16, 2016, 15:36 IST | Amit Kumar |

Veteran anti-graft activist Anna Hazare is starting a crusade and wants those interested in joining him to promise they won’t get involved in 'political activites'

New Delhi: Veteran anti-graft activist Anna Hazare has become cautious in his social crusades, after burning his fingers in the case of Arvind Kejriwal, his former comrade, who went on to form a political party and is now chief minister of Delhi.

Eyeing poll reforms: Anna Hazare
Eyeing poll reforms: Anna Hazare

Taking lessons from the same, Hazare has started asking for affidavits from people - where he wants them to state they will not indulge in any kind of politics - if they want to participate in another movement with him.

Hazare's new pet project seeks removal of poll symbols from ballot papers and EVMs as part an electoral reform, in the same Ramlila Maidan in Delhi, which was the focal point of his anti-corruption movement, India Against Corruption (IAC).

Hazare believes that had he taken the affidavits from the previous members of IAC, which included Kejriwal, they would not have formed a political party and contested elections. "Now, I have asked all the state coordinators to collect an affidavit on Rs 100 stamp from whosoever wants to participate in our movement, declaring that they won't join any political party and won't contest any elections. The day they will collect 1 lakh such affidavits, I will start my protest at Ramlila Maidan," said Hazare.

He added that the country is run on the basis of the Constitution and in the Constitution there is no mention of any party system or symbol. Hazare claims he met the Election Commissioner thrice seeking removal of poll symbols from ballot papers and EVMs as part of an electoral reform.

"Any democratic election should be on a candidate-basis and the party symbol should be removed from ballot papers or EVMs. But, making amendments and bringing reforms in the present poll system is not an easy task and we have to be ready for the longer fight. The public holds a key to make changes in democracy." "We will not sit quite until our aim of election reforms are not met by the Election Commission," he said.

'PM, Delhi CM same'

Anna Hazare finds little difference between his erstwhile co-activist Kejriwal and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. "If one is a graduate, then the other has a doctorate. Until the system of party-based politics continues, corruption can't be curbed. To make an overall change, the system needs to be changed not the power. The key to eliminating corruption is in the hands of voters," said Hazare to mid-day

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