Chronology of an epochal fast

August 28th, 2011 - 12:00 pm ICT by IANS  

Anna Hazare Chronology of a fast that forced Indian parliament to acknowledge people’s power and established civil society’s primacy in a democracy:

Jan 30: Marches in over 60 cities to demand anti-corruption Lokpal bill. Social reformer Anna Hazare, former top cop Kiran Bedi, activist Swami Agnivesh and lawyer Prashant Bhushan participate in Delhi rally.

Feb 26: Hazare announces fast unto death from April 5 if Prime Minister Manmohan Singh does not decide on civil society’s inclusion in drafting the bill.

April 5: Hazare starts fast at Delhi’s Jantar Mantar.

April 8: Hazare announces decision to end fast as government agrees to form 10-member panel of civil society members and union ministers to draft a stringent anti-corruption law.

April 9: Hazare ends fast.

April 16: Joint committee’s first meet cordial. Both sides exchange drafts.

May 2: Second meet with “no difference of opinion”.

May 7: Agreement on independent Lokpal with powers to initiate investigation and prosecution.

May 23: Agreement on empowering Lokpal to order list of movable and immovable assets of accused in corruption cases when sufficient evidence found to book them.

May 30: Differences appear as government disagrees on including prime minister, Supreme and High Court judges and MPs’ conduct in parliament within Lokpal’s ambit.

June 6: Civil society members boycott meet a day after police crackdown against yoga guru Baba Ramdev’s fast in Delhi’s Ramlila Maidan.

June 15: No consensus on inclusion of prime minister, Supreme and High Court judges.

June 20: Some ice melts amid war of words; government calls it “major step forward”.

June 21: Last meeting of joint committee ends on sour note. Both sides exchange drafts; Hazare warns of another fast.

Aug 15: Hazare denied permission to fast at Delhi’s Jayaprakash Narayan Memorial Park after Team Anna agrees to accept only 16 of police’s 22 conditions.

Aug 16: Hazare begins fast, detained early morning and sent to seven-day judicial custody to Tihar jail. Government decides to set him free late night. He refuses.

Aug 17: Hazare refuses to leave Tihar Jail till a solution is reached on fast venue. Supporters gather outside prison, Hazare continues fast from jail. Permitted to fast at Ramlila Maidan.

Aug 19: Hazare leaves Tihar Jail, continues fast at Ramlila Maidan.

Aug 23: Government invites Team Anna for talks.

Aug 24: Second round of talks, all-party meeting held. No breakthrough in impasse.

Aug 25: After meetings with political parties and Team Anna, government agrees to debate all versions of Lokpal bill in parliament.

Aug 27: Both houses of parliament debate Lokpal bill, adjourn after adopting ’sense of the house’ and agreeing to Hazare’s three demands that will be sent to standing committee on Lokpal bill.

Aug 28: Anna breaks fast on 13th day.

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