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Tuesday, 18 October 2011

An open letter to Anna Hazare

Dear Anna Hazareji,

Thank you very much for being able to convert a handful of bye elections into a referendum on corruption in public life – or rather, on your blueprint on how this can be legislatively tackled. Now that the verdict has come, I am sure that no political candidate will dare say that he or she is opposed to the Jan Lokpal Bill and thereby risk being rejected by the voters.

Thank you also for being able to foster India Against Corruption’s agenda on a leader who primarily owes his position to being the son of the person who sparked off one of the most popular phrases in Indian politics – ‘Aaya Ram, Gaya Ram’. But then your movement does not include political probity. Or does it?

I would also like to compliment you on your decision to ask people to reject the Congress candidate even while not revealing your choice. That was clever tactic and you gave the people the option of voting for the candidate who lost by a slim margin. As far your decision is concerned, it demonstrated that you are not mired in ‘dirty’ party politics. And it ensured that regardless of the verdict you would emerge on the side of the victor.

You also took a politically ‘correct’ decision not to remind voters in Hisar that their choice was essentially between Kuldeep Bishnoi and Ajay Chautala from families of two of the three (in)famous Lals of Haryana – Devi Lal, Bansi Lal and Bhajan Lal. The trio now rests in peace after having spawned a political culture that gave a new dimension to crossing over.

I am in absolute agreement with your belief that the new generation has taken over the family political enterprises they will probably turn a new leaf. Media reports pointing out of dramatic increase in assets are actually not a true reflection of their political desire to combat corruption.

I agree that if you are waging a bigger battle then for strategic reasons it is necessary to stage a drama of the make-believe for bolstering the morale of your supporters. This is why it was important for you to ignore the fact that Hisar was the only seat in Haryana that Congress lost in the 2009 Lok Sabha polls and that its candidate had little chance to win right from the outset.

You have made your point on corruption and now it is time to carry the banner to other states. Politically significant assembly elections are due in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Gujarat, Goa, Himachal Pradesh & Manipur next year. I am glad that key members of your team have already started campaigning in UP to gain a head-start over opponents of your anti-graft Bill.

I am sure you will also attend to other pressing issues like including giving directives to your team members on what to say on important national issues.

Wishing the best in your anti-corruption campaign.

Yours truly,




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Gauri Shyam Manaktala said...

You should be open to suggestions on the Jan Lok bill.

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