New Delhi: 6.32: Team Anna has ended its 10-day-long fast at Jantar Mantar. General VK Singh offered a glass of water to Anna Hazare to end his fast.
6.05: Addressing the gathering at Jantar Mantar, anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare has said that he will travel across the country and make them aware.
Anna said he would back his team's party, but clarified that he would not contest elections.
Team Anna has announced a political party, saying it will not have a high command and people will select their candidates.
Justifying the decision of Team Anna to join politics, the veteran social activist said that they were challenged by the government itself to come into Parliament.
5.30: Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal has said that the agitation has completed its first stage, and will now enter its second stage, saying it is the time for a total revolution.
Announcing his political party, Kejriwal said that the agitation would now be both on the streets as well as inside Parliament.
Talking about the political party of Team Anna, he said that the party would not have any high command and the candidates would be selected by the people, adding that they would travel across the country to spread awareness.
He further said, "We will make all our donations and spending public and challenge other parties to do the same. Our candidates will be decided by people, we will challenge others to do the same."
The Team Anna member also asked the people to suggest a name for their political party, urging students to become a part of the political movement.
5.08 pm: Former Army Chief General VK Singh has congratulated Team Anna for fighting against corruption, supporting their decision to provide a political option to the people.
Addressing the gathering at Jantar Mantar, Singh said, There are many problems in the country, one of that is black money...the governance is finished and we are directionless."
He further said that Team Anna must be prepared to face "opposition from those who do not believe in democracy."
4:15 pm: Retired Army Chief General VK Singh reached Jantar mantar to end Anna Hazare's fast. Anna's fast will be broken at the hands of General VK Singh, unlike his previous fasts, that were broken at the hands of children.
3:20 pm: Union Law Minister Salman Khurshid has written a blow by blow account of his secret meeting with Anna Hazare on June 23. In an article in Tehelka, Khurshid claimed that Anna felt that Ramdev used his name for support, while his agenda was completely different. Khurshid said that Anna volunteered that he had decided not to tour country and would not fast on July 25 and August 9.
Khurshid has also claimed that Anna Hazare told him that he has nothing against the Congress ministers and knew the shortcomings of his team. Khurshid wrote that Anna even praised Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan.
Khurshid also claimed that Anna said he had full faith in Kiran Bedi and Justice Santosh Hegde.
Khurshid also said that Anna told him there was nothing wrong in keeping the details of his meeting secret for the good of the country.
1:00 pm: Swami Agnivesh slammed out at Team Anna for deciding to break its fast and go political. "Anna has broken the sanctity of 'anshan' (fast). Anshan is always the last option. This is a black day," Agnivesh said.
"Calling off the anshan and looking at an alternative political option has hurt the dignity of the fast that was introduced by Mahatama Gandhi. They should apologise to the country to have used the sentiments of the country," Agnivesh said.
Meanwhile, this time, not a child, but Retired Army Chief General VK Singh will break Anna Hazare's fast at 5 pm at Jantar Mantar.
12:40 pm: Team Anna, who is set for its political stint, says that most of its supporters agree with the idea of going political. Team Anna member Prashant Bhushan said the team had no other option but to go political. "The same people who challenged us to a political fight are now saying we have political ambitions. We had no choice but to provide a political alternative," he said.
11:30 am: Team Anna member Manish Sisodia on Friday said that the team members were left with no option as the government wasn't listening to them. "We realised that the government was not listening to us. Look what has happened to Irom Sharmila, she was force fed for years. The government has many ways of ignoring people's opinions. The voice of the people does not matter to the government," Sisodia said.
Many India Against Corruption volunteers were missing on Friday morning from the fast venue, Jantar Mantar. They are upset with the movement going political.
Team Anna supporters have been giving mixed reactions. While Anna Hazare said he will stay out of it, his supporters say they want a revolution and not another political party.
"I'm against this decision. Anna should take it back. This is a movement and should remain that way," one of the supporters said. "I've come from Jaipur to request Anna to take the path of a revolution and not party politics," another supporter added.
Nine days after their fast, the anti-corruption activists, members of Team Anna, will end their agitation on Friday. This comes after Team Anna made a dramatic announcement of giving the country a political alternative.
As the government refused to budge, hopes of an encore of Ramlila Maidan, when union ministers were forced to come and appeal to Anna Hazare to call off his fast, faded away. So it took an appeal by two dozen eminent citizens for Team Anna to change track.
Union Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal said, "We are happy that they have decided to call off their fast, this really was an instrument of coercion being used by them."
There was an attempted referendum of sorts too, with Team Anna member Arvind kejriwal himself asking questions to the gathered public about the road ahead.
"What should we be doing, should there be a political alternative," Kejriwal asked the people gathered at Jantar Mantar.
Questions will be raised about what has been achieved by Team Anna through this nine-day fast as to whether this was a strategic mistake and is the move to call off the fast simply an exit route.
The strategy now is to look for a political alternative, but Team Anna isn't sure whether that alternative is launching a political party.
"We are seeking a revolution, how we can change the way politics is done in the country, launch a parallel form of politics in the country," Team Anna member Prashant Bhushan said.