Core Committee Meeting Without the Core
The anti-corruption civil society members’ team of Anna Hazare held its core committee meeting at Ghaziabad, India on October 29 to discuss the latest scenario arising out of the allegations and disputes involving some members.
Speculation was rife and rumors were floating about the immediate disbanding of Team Anna and having a team with new members representing a wider base across the country. Letters were written to Anna by a few members to this effect and there was an indication that Anna was willing to have his team reconstituted and restructured.
Putting all speculation to rest the core committee decided unanimously that there was no question of dissolving the present committee or bowing down to pressure tactics by interested groups. They maintained that their anti-corruption movement was not anti-Congress and that the Hisar chapter could have been avoided if they got the Congress-led government’s assurance letter earlier. At the same time, they threatened to oppose the party again in assembly elections early next year if the anti-corruption Bill was not passed by then.
They refuted the allegations against Prashant Bhushan, Arvind Kejriwal and Kiran Bedi terming these as a part of a smear campaign which, in fact, had been the stand of Team Anna over the last few days.
Ifs, buts and whys remain though. At the core committee meeting the ‘core’ was conspicuous by its absence. Anna himself was not present owing to his continued vow of fast and bad health. Social activist Medha Patkar and Justice Santosh Hedge abstained themselves too quoting prior commitments. Ms Patkar earlier demanded the present Team Anna to be suspended and expanded. So the meeting was predominantly presided over by the disputed members themselves.
Does one rise above the law and get immunity to criticism just because s/he is behind a great movement for a noble cause?
Meanwhile the 'core' members met Anna in his native place.After the meeting a press conference was held with Kiran Bedi on right and Arvind Kejriwal on left of Anna Hazare who remained silent still. They maintained again that there was no plan of revamping Team Anna and that there was no rift within. The charge of having links with right-wind fundamentalist organizations was denied again. With Anna continuing his vow of silence the imbroglio was set to continue indefinitely.
Questions need to be answered soon.