Hegde opposes Hazare move to float political party

August 3rd, 2012 - 8:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Anna Hazare Bangalore, Aug 3 (IANS) Social activist Anna Hazare should not form a political party to fight for his just cause as entering politics would be an expensive proposition, former Supreme Court justice N. Santosh Hegde said Friday.

“Personally, am not in favour of Annaji floating a political party and contesting elections, which is an expensive affair and requires huge resources in terms of funds and cadres,” Hegde, who has been associated with Taam Anna, said.

He was speaking to reporters at the Freedom Park in the city centre where about 100 activists of India Against Corruption have been on a week-long fast in solidarity with Team Anna’s hunger-strike in New Delhi.

Welcoming Team Anna’s decision to call off the indefinite fast and explore an alternative strategy for a strong Lokpal law, the former Karnataka Lokayukta (ombudsman) said he would not, however, oppose if any member of the team wanted to contest elections.

“I have no objection if Team Anna members want to participate in elections and purge the political system of the ills that are harming the country and its billion-strong people,” Hegde asserted.

Noting that Hazare had said he would not fight elections or vie for political power, Hegde said it would be unfair to link the crusader with the alternative move as he (Hazare) was neither forming a political party nor was keen on contesting elections.

“As Anna said in his speech yesterday (Thursday), do not link his name with politics or elections as it is important to keep his identity separate as he stands for fight against corruption and cleansing the system of its ills,” Hegde observed.

Noting that the need of the hour was to bring about a revolutionary change in Indian politics and governance at all levels, Hegde said the grave situation the country was facing warranted honest and clean people to enter politics.

“I will support any candidate irrespective of party affiliation provided he/she is clean and committed to the welfare of the people. As my views hold good even for Team Anna members, I will support and campaign for them also if they contest in elections,” he added.

Admitting that forming a political party and contesting elections were a Herculean task in the absence of cadres, infrastructure and financial support, Hegde said though there was no wrong in going for an alternative system to fight corruption and improve governance, the Anna Team would require massive support of the people across the country and resources to sustain the proposed political platform.

“It is no easy task to take on an entrenched political set up and confront its vested interests with the support of only Anna Team members and a few thousand followers of the movement. Millions of people have to be involved from across the strata. We have to prevail upon the youth and new electorate to bring about the change by voting for only upright candidates and fighting the corrupt system,” he noted.

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