Before beginning this post let me make it clear that I am neither a ‘Corrupt’ Congress nor a ‘Non Secular’ BJP supporter. I don’t want BJP to come in power whose ultimate aim is to turn India into a Hindu nation, but I also don’t want Congress to stay in power and continue looting the nation and censoring free speech. I have shown my support for Anna Hazare and India Against Corruption for it’s a non political movement meant to benefit the nation.
I have been a strong believer in the righteousness of Anna Hazare’s crusade against corruption so on day 2 of Anna’s Lokwar III, I decided to support him in his fight for bringing the Jan Lokpal bill and I went at the local gathering of India Against Corruption (IAC) members at Stadium Circle and Income Tax Circle here in Ahmedabad. And just like Delhi and Bombay, there wasn’t a healthy turnout this time, hardly 10 people when I reached at around noon which was sad. The agitation is losing its charm and it can be clearly seen; it was not far in August when Hazare went for his fast in New Delhi and lakhs had supported him by coming in the streets all over the country but this couldn’t be seen this time. The prime reason may be politicizing of this non political movement by the opposition and using this as pawn to hit back on the ruling party which is totally uncalled for and puts an impression in the minds of the people that it is backed by the BJP, RSS etc.
Also many might have been driven away by the adamant attitude of Team Anna which wants it’s version of the Lokpal bill as it is. The reason is justified but one shouldn’t forget that Team Anna has made numerous modifications after consulting many key people and the public, also this attitude of Anna has been able to push the Government to include clauses which were opposed initially. It’s sad that people are forgetting that it was because of Anna this Bill saw the face of parliament after more than 40 years!
Also with Lokpal bill passed in the LokSabha the day before people have shown a casual attitude this time without understanding the differences between Anna’s version and the one of the government.
At the venue, on the corner of the road under the shade put on by IAC and amidst the sound of ‘Anna-fied’ versions of popular numbers that were being played I met this man named Bhagwan Patil who is a painter by profession and a strong Anna supporter, he had visited Anna last month in Ralegan Siddhi and stayed with him for 3 days, he narrated his meeting with Anna and proudly showed me the autograph he obtained from Anna which he has got laminated and keeps with him all the time. I was amazed that this man who is illiterate and can’t even read ‘Mai Anna Hu’ in Gujarati which he got printed on the Topis he distributes had such insightful views about Anna and this movement in general.
Also at the venue I met this English speaking, 73 year old Parmesh Bhavsar who is a retired teacher from Diwan Balubhai School in Ahmedabad and also a strong Anna supporter. He was also there on Day 1, I had some discussions with him regarding the day before’s LokSabha debate and about the youth being not so aware about the current scenario of the country.
But what amazed me the most was this 52 year old man named Dharamsinh Rabari who doesn’t have both his legs and walks with the help of Jaipur Foot sitting for a 3 day fast just like Anna. I left in the evening after participation in the Bike rally which moved throughout the city and showed a strong attendance even by the youth.
I feel that sometimes one should take some time out from one’s daily life, lift one’s ass from air conditioned rooms and should come out and do something for the nation and look at the part of the society which actually comes down on the streets to demand a deserved change, no matter of what proportion it is.
I did my part and I am proud of it.
(See the next post for further discussion on Jan Lokpal and Lokpal)