Allegations against me, team members false: Hazare (Lead)

June 12th, 2012 - 10:00 pm ICT by IANS  

Anna Hazare Ralegan Siddhi, June 12 (IANS) Social activist Anna Hazare Tuesday said all allegations against him and his team are baseless and false and he was disappointed with the statements by Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) V. Narayanasamy.

In response to the minister’s allegations against Team Anna members Arvind Kejriwal and Kiran Bedi, Hazare dared the government to act against him if he and his team members were anti-nationals.

“Punish me if I’m guilty,” he told reporters here.

“We are not backed by any foreign hand. All allegations against us from the PMO are false and baseless. This is just a trick to divert attention from the Lokpal bill,” he said.

“Narayanasamy said Anna lacked the will to fight corruption. He says we are anti-nationals. But I’m already fighting corruption tooth and nail. What more does he want me to do? This is not right,” he said.

At the same time, Hazare asked the central government to “show the proof of foreign-funding for my movement”.

“The PMO should reveal which foreign hand is behind me, such baseless statement is not expected from the PMO,” he said.

“I have been accused of not giving an account of the money which was collected at Ramlila Maidan (venue of his anti-corruption protest in Delhi),” he said.

“This is completely wrong. Account of every penny is there for everyone to see. We are in the clear. We have posted it online. We have even got the accounts audited. What more do they want,” he said.

Hazare, in turn, demanded that the government and various political parties give account of the money they collected.

He dismissed the PMO’s claims that there was no evidence against Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in the Comptroller and Auditor General’s (CAG) report on coal blocks allocation and said: “Smoke is always accompanied by fire. They should investigate the allegations.”

Hazare said the government should make public the status of investigations against each of the 14 ministers who were accused of corruption and said there was sufficient evidence against them.

“I have sent the file of evidence against the cabinet ministers to UPA (United Progressive Alliance) chairperson Sonia Gandhi as well. They should investigate cases against these ministers based on the evidence we have given,” he said.

Reiterating his call for a strong Lokpal, Hazare again questioned the will of the government to fight corruption.

“The government is not serious about passing an anti-graft bill,” he said.

He also accused the government of trying to divert the attention from the real issues, saying “that is the reason why the PMO is making such comments against me”.

“This is cheating the people again. The government has cheated and betrayed the people of the nation at all levels,” he said.

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