Anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare has expressed disappointment over Prime Minister Narendra Modi Government’s failure to implement the Lokpal Act, 2013 and has warned of an agitation in Delhi to press for the implementation of the Act.
In a letter to Modi on August 30, Hazare wrote: “I have never agitated against any particular political party. In the last three years, I waited for you to act and kept reminding you about these issues. But I never received any reply to these letters,” he said.
“Now my next letter would be about the venue and date of agitation,” Hazare said, stating that he has made up his mind about the final step.
The well-known social activist said that the government had completed three years but there appeared to be no willingness to execute the Lokpal Act which is aimed at bringing down corruption.
Hazare in his letter said that the BJP had given its assent to the Lokpal Bill and it was expected that the party would start the implementation of the Act. “The Prime Minister is speaking on various issues in his speeches but has never mentioned anything about the Lokpal Act in his Maan Ki Baat,” the letter states.
Reminding the Prime Minister of his promise to work towards a “corruption-free India”, he listed a number of legislations initiated by the Congress government towards this end — The Prevention of Bribery of Foreign Public Officials and Officials of Public International Organization Bill 2011, Judicial Standards and Accountability Bill 2012, The Prevention of Money Laundering (Amendment) Bill and The Public Procurement Bill 2012.
“All of these legislations will help bring down corruption in India, but the Prime Minister is keeping mum on all these issues. Then how is India going to become corruption-free?” Hazare asked.
Acknowledging that he was still receiving complaints of corruption from all parts of the country, the letter reads: “Corruption has not ended; my conscience tells me to re-launch the agitation.” Hazare said that he will begin consultations with fellow crusaders and citizens in the next few days to plan the date and venue of the agitation.
Ayodhya on high alert following intelligence inputs
Ayodhya: Amid VIP movements, Ayodhya has been put on high alert soon after intelligence inputs indicated a possible terror attack in the city.
“We have put more force into action. The force has been alerted. Also, intelligence officials in the civil dress have come here. They are checking all hotels, restaurants and railway stations. The police force is vigilant and keeping a track of all the movements,” Anil Kumar Sisodia, Superintendent of Police City, told ANI.
This comes ahead of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray’s visit to Ayodhya on Sunday along with his party MPs.
According to reports, the security has also been heightened keeping in mind the hearing on 2005 Ram Janmabhoomi attack on June 18.
Seven died while cleaning hotel sewer in Vadodara
Vadodara: Seven persons, including four sanitation workers, died due to asphyxiation on Saturday while cleaning sewer of a hotel in Gujarat’s Vadodara district, officials said.
The incident happened at a hotel in Fartikui village in Dabhoi tehsil, about 30 km from Vadodara city. Three employees of the hotel were also among those killed.
“When one sanitation worker failed to come out of the manhole, others went inside. All of them died due to asphyxiation,” district collector Kiran Zaveri told PTI.
Manmohan retires from Rajya Sabha
New Delhi: For the first time in 28 years, former prime minister Dr Manmohan Singh’s name ceased to be part of the list of members of the Rajya Sabha on its Web site, and was included in the list of former members of Parliament.
With the Congress lacking the numbers in the Assam legislature to ensure his re-election, 86-year-old Dr Singh retired from the Rajya Sabha.
Dr Singh, then finance minister in the P V Narasimha Rao government, had debuted in the House on October 1, 1991, from Assam and represented the state for five consecutive terms. He was the leader of the House during his 10 years as PM, and leader of the Opposition from 1998 to 2004.The former PM would now need to wait for the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, an ally of the Congress, to send him to the Rajya Sabha next month or until the next biennial elections in the Upper House in April 2020 when 54 MPs retire.
Five Rajya Sabha members from Tamil Nadu retire in July. The DMK, along with its allies, has the strength in the state legislature to get at least three elected to the Rajya Sabha. It has promised one seat to MDMK chief Vaiko.
However, sources said the DMK and the Congress have not had any discussions on the issue.
The Congress could also hope to send Dr Singh to the Upper House from Gujarat if elections to fill the two vacancies from the state take place together.
The vacancies are on account of two Bharatiya Janata Party Rajya Sabha members from Gujarat, Amit Anilchandra Shah and Smriti Zubin Irani, being elected to the Lok Sabha. Shah has debuted in the Lok Sabha from Gandhinagar while Irani is the Lok Sabha member from Amethi in Uttar Pradesh.
The Congress’s numbers in the Gujarat assembly would ensure the party wins one of the two seats, the other going to the BJP, if elections to the two seats are held jointly.