Anna Hazare to hold first rally after his team split

Anna Hazare to hold first rally after his team split
Patna:  Anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare will be back in action today after months of hibernation following a split in Team Anna and the raging controversy over one of his former aides Arvind Kejriwal joining politics.

Mr Hazare is all set to launch a country-wide 'Vyawastha Parivartan' (change in system) programme and address a "Jantranta rally" in Patna today.

On choosing Patna for the campaign, Mr Hazare said Bihar was a 'pious land' as Gandhiji had launched Satyagrah against the British rule from Champaran and JP his 'sampoorna kranti' (total revolution) from here, besides being the land of Gautam Buddha.

Reacting to Sonia Gandhi's assurance on Lokpal Bill, Mr Hazare said that such letters and assurances are coming for the past two years.

"Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had earlier too written such letters to me promising to pass the Lokpal bill. (Their) intention is not clear ... They have been cheating people time and again ... If they had been honest, one or at best two parliamentary sessions would have been sufficient to do it (pass the Lokpal bill)," he said on Tuesday.

Asked if he had any expectation from Congress Vice-president Rahul Gandhi on the bill, he said "Everybody is the same. All of them are cheating the people."

Sonia Gandhi had written a letter to Mr Hazare recently and sent it to his Rale Sidhi village home assuring him that the Lokpal Bill, which he is struggling for, would be passed in the coming budget session of Parliament.

Sharing his plans with the media on Tuesday, Mr Hazare said, "The first phase of my movement was against corruption Apart from anti-graft , the second phase of my movement will now also focus on complete systematic change. We will take the cause of total revolution to its logical end."
He added that  after launching the 'Vyawastha Parivartan' programme from Patna, he would also visit four states in February, whose names he did not divulge.

He would later travel through the country to make the people aware of his movement.

Activists of India Against Corruption (IAC) have been working overtime for ensuring the success of the Jantantra rally. The organisers of the rally said that Mr Hazare would be welcomed with some 'Bihar special gifts.'

A 'lota' (small metal pot) filled with soil from Bhitiharwa ashram set up by Mahatama Gandhi during the 1917 Champaran satyagrah, a makhana garland from Mithilanchal, besides a memento depicting Ashok chakra would be there at the rally tomorrow.

Mr Singh said Magsasay awardee 'waterman' Rajinder Singh, social activist P V Rajgopal and journalist Santosh Bhartia would be present in the rally.

Motorcycle rallies were organised in Patna today to mobilise people for the rally to be held at the historic Gandhi Maidan.

(With PTI inputs)

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