1. Who is Anna Hazare?
An ex-army man. Fought 1965 Indo-Pak War
2. What’s so special about him?
He built a village Ralegaon Siddhi in Ahamad Nagar district, Maharashtra
3. So what?
This village is a self-sustained model village. Energy is produced in the village itself from solar power, biofuel and wind mills.
In 1975, it used to be a poverty clad village. Now it is one of the richest village in India. It has become a model for self-sustained, eco-friendly & harmonic village.
This guy, Anna Hazare was awarded Padma Bhushan and is a known figure for his social activities.
5. Really, what is he fighting for?
He is supporting a cause, the amendment of a law to curb corruption in India.
6. How that can be possible?
He is advocating for a Bil, The Lok Pal Bill (The Citizen Ombudsman Bill), that will form an autonomous authority who will make politicians (ministers), beurocrats (IAS/IPS) accountable for their deeds.
7. It’s an entirely new thing right..?
In 1972, the bill was proposed by then Law minister Mr. Shanti Bhushan. Since then it has been neglected by the politicians and some are trying to change the bill to suit their theft (corruption).
8. Oh.. He is going on a hunger strike for that whole thing of passing a Bill ! How can that be possible in such a short span of time?
The first thing he is asking for is: the government should come forward and announce that the bill is going to be passed. Next, they make a joint committee to DRAFT the LOK PAL BILL. 50% government participation and 50% public participation. Because you can’t trust the government entirely for making such a bill which does not suit them.
9. Fine, What will happen when this bill is passed?
A LokPal will be appointed at the center. He will have an autonomous charge, say like the Election Commission of India. In each and every state, Lokayukta will be appointed. The job is to bring all alleged party to trial in case of corruptions within 1 year. Within 2 years, the guilty will be punished. Not like, Bofors scam or Bhopal Gas Tragedy case, that has been going for last 25 years without any result.
10. Is he alone? Whoelse is there in the fight with Anna Hazare?
Baba Ramdev, Ex. IPS Kiran Bedi, Social Activist Swami Agnivesh, RTI activist Arvind Kejriwal and many more. Rominent personalities like Aamir Khan is supporting his cause.
Ok, got it. What can I do?
At least we can spread the message. How? Putting status message, links, video, changing profile pics. At least we can support Anna Hazare and the cause for uprooting corruption from India.
At least we can hope that his Hunger Strike does not go in vain. At least we can pray for his good health.
Salient features of Jan Lokpal Bill:
1. An institution called LOKPAL at the centre and LOKAYUKTA in each state will be set up
2. Like Supreme Court and Election Commission, they will be completely independent of the governments. No minister or bureaucrat will be able to influence their investigations.
3. Cases against corrupt people will not linger on for years anymore:Investigations in any case will have to be completed in one year. Trial should be completed in next one year so that the corrupt politician, officer or judge is sent to jail within two years.
4. The loss that a corrupt person caused to the government will be recovered at the time of conviction.
5. How will it help a common citizen: If any work of any citizen is not done in prescribed time in any government office, Lokpal will impose financial penalty on guilty officers, which will be given as compensation to the complainant.
6. So, you could approach Lokpal if your ration card or passport or voter card is not being made or if police is not registering your case or any other work is not being done in prescribed time. Lokpal will have to get it done in a month’s time. You could also report any case of corruption to Lokpal like ration being siphoned off, poor quality roads been constructed or panchayat funds being siphoned off. Lokpal will have to complete its investigations in a year, trial will be over in next one year and the guilty will go to jail within two years.
7. But won’t the government appoint corrupt and weak people as Lokpal members? That won’t be possible because its members will be selected by judges, citizens and constitutional authorities and not by politicians, through a completely transparent and participatory process.
8. What if some officer in Lokpal becomes corrupt? The entire functioning of Lokpal/ Lokayukta will be completely transparent. Any complaint against any officer of Lokpal shall be investigated and the officer dismissed within two months.
9. What will happen to existing anti-corruption agencies? CVC, departmental vigilance and anti-corruption branch of CBI will be merged into Lokpal. Lokpal will have complete powers and machinery to independently investigate and prosecute any officer, judge or politician.
10. It will be the duty of the Lokpal to provide protection to those who are being victimized for raising their voice against corruption