New Delhi: Anna Hazare announced on Friday that he would start another agitation throughout the country from 2014 if the Central Government failed to create a strong Lokpal. Addressing a press conference soon after the all-party meeting called by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh failed to arrive at a consensus on the Lokpal Bill, Hazare announced that he along with his supporters would sit on 'dharna' (protest) on March 25 at New Delhi's Jantar Mantar.
While blaming the government of being insensitive, he said that the dharna at Jantar Mantar would seek protection for whistleblowers many of whom have been killed while exposing corruption cases.
"Twenty-five people fighting against corruption have been killed. The government is insensitive on this. We will sit on dharna on March 25 at Jantar Mantar to seek protection of whistleblowers," said Hazare.
Claiming that the present Lokpal Bill was not strong enough to stop corruption, he said that it was sad that the all-party meet failed to break the deadlock over the issue.
We will go to the people and could even protest at the Ramlila Maidan. The Assembly polls in five states are a clear indication about the people's feeling. We will continue our agitation for a strong Lokpal Bill. If required we will sit on fast again," he said.
Team Anna member and former IPS officer Kiran Bedi also demanded a strong Lokpal and said that it was the responsibility of the Central Government to get the legislation passed in Parliament.
"We are looking for an effective legislative model. We will keep the awareness alive and keep the pressure alive. It is a collective social demand. The Central Government should come up with the strong Lokpal Bill," said Bedi.
"It seems the rift within Parliament is wide open on the Lokpal Bill. If the government is rethinking on amending the bill that has been passed in Lok Sabha, then it is a good sign. If there is the number game, then the ruling party has the numbers," she added.