I will not undertake any more fasts: Hazare
Activist Anna Hazare has said that he will not resort to fasting any more to press for his demands and will fight for his causes through agitations.
"I will not undertake any fasts from now. In the future, I will fight for my causes through agitations," Hazare said on Friday night.
The anti-corruption crusader also said he will continue to work to send "clean" people to Parliament.
He said a large number of retired IAS officers had shown their willingness to join his movement for a corruption-free India.
Expressing faith in the country's youth, Hazare asked them not to be pessimistic about the future of the country.
In a veiled attack on his former close aide Arvind Kejriwal, Hazare said, "politics has split" the anti-corruption movement and the pro-party group has gone against his will.
The Gandhian activist also decried efforts to link him with some parties and "communal" outfits, in an apparent reference to allegations that he is closing ranks with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh through yoga guru Baba Ramdev to run the anti-corruption movement after the split with the Kejriwal-led group.
"Those who favour party have been saying that if Anna says, then they will not form a party. But despite that, they have decided to go ahead with the plan against my decision. Sometimes, it is also said they were forming the party because Anna has decided so. This is not right," he said.
In a new blog posting, the 75-year-old activist also said the movement was not divided in the past two years despite efforts by the UPA government. But, he added, it has now split even without the government putting in any effort as one group wanted to take the electoral route.
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Image: Activist Arvind Kejriwal with Anna Hazare before they parted ways
'I will always remain part of civil society'
Expressing confidence that Lokpal Bill will be passed before 2014 Lok Sabha elections, he said "unfortunately, the movement has split even before we got the Bill. One wants to go political and the other wants to keep the movement alive."
"Now, there is an effort to link me with some party, or communal organisations. I have never in my life been a part of any such organisations. Till my last breath, I will not be part of any such things...the movement has split due to politics. Efforts are on to destroy whatever is left now," said Hazare.
"As elections are nearing, some party will try to misuse my name to garner votes. They will try to associate me with them. There will be misuse of the movement's name. You should not trust all these. The movement will remain movement only. Because it is sacred," he said.
He said that on August 4 in Jantar Mantar, he had made it clear that he will not form a party or join a political group. "For the last 20 years, I have been part of civil society movement and in future also I will remain so. We have parted ways but our goal is the same," he said.
Image: Anna Hazare during a rally at New Delhi
'I have not even earned Rs 5 from donations'
On September 23, during an agitation in Delhi, Arvind Kejriwal had said that he hopes Anna Hazare will be back with him in another "three-four months" if he can work honestly in politics.
On the next course of his movement, he said his movement now needs an office in Delhi to coordinate its affairs. "But because of lack of money, we are not able to find one. I have not taken even Rs 5 from the donations, which came in Jantar Mantar and Ramlila Maidan. I kept all the money with India Against Corruption so that it will be spent on the movement," he said.
Despite strong demands from his supporters, Anna Hazare had earlier rejected Arvind Kejriwal's offer to return money collected during the anti-corruption agitations.
"But I believe even if people donate Rs 5 or 10 we won't suffer from lack of money...we have not taken any money from industrialists or from foreign agencies. We will not take in future also. We expect to open our office in Delhi soon. We have to ensure that the movement reaches every nook and corner of the country," he said.
Image: A supporter of Hazare partcipates in a rally against corruption in New Delhi
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters