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Saturday, 10 March 2012

Team Anna’s anti-graft movement had an impact

Anti-graft crusader Anna Hazare’s team, which conducted a low-key campaign in the assembly elections in five states, but kept its focus on Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh, appeared satisfied with Tuesday’s election results. The jury was out among the political parties and analysts whether team Anna’s campaign had any impact on the election results, and the reactions were on expected lines.

The Congress dismissed it as a non-issue, but the BJP said anti-graft campaigns of Hazare and Baba Ramdev were definite factors behind high polling percentage and the poor Congress showing.

“Given the limited options available to voters, the results show that voters chose lesser evils in all the five states,” said key team Anna member, Prashant Bhushan.

Asked about the unprecedented victory of Samajwadi Party in UP, he said :“BSP paid the price of running a corrupt government and the Congress faced the music for not taking effective anti-corruption measures at the national level.”

Another team Anna member, Kiran Bedi linked the poor Congress showing to the lokpal bill. “Congress appeared to be suffering because it was blatantly against  an effective Lokpal bill. And still is! Unless it changes stance,” Bedi tweeted.

Team Anna was willing to accept that its almost open support for Uttarakhand chief minister BC Khanduri helped the BJP to come back into the fight from a hopeless situation a few months back.

From an open anti-Congress campaign in the Hisar (Haryana) Lok Sabha byelection in last October to an indirect campaign this time, team Anna changed its tactics this time following criticism that the anti-graft movement was being given a political colour.

Team Anna appears set to take it battle with the Congress and and its allies to 2014.


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