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HindustanTimes Fri,25 Apr 2014

Some announcement on political party on Oct 2: Kejriwal

PTI  New Delhi, September 24, 2012
First Published: 19:59 IST(24/9/2012) | Last Updated: 20:09 IST(24/9/2012)

Arvind Kejriwal on Monday said he will form a political party and some announcement to this effect will be made on October 2.

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"We are not entering politics to acquire power. We are into a movement and we will stay in the movement. Politics is yet another tool for strengthening of this movement. Yes, we will form a political party. Some announcement will be made on October 2," Kejriwal told CNN-IBN.

Earlier, sources in India Against Corruption (IAC) said the formation of the party will not be announced on Gandhi Jayanti and instead a process will be set in motion seeking public suggestions on a draft of its vision and constitution.

However, sources later said this decision was changed and now the party will be formed on October 2.

"Yes we are into politics. It's the very system that forced us to enter into politics. Today if they pass the lokpal bill, gram swaraj bill, right to reject and right to recall bill we will be away from politics," Kejriwal said.

He said till the time party is formed, they will not collect donations for the party. He also denied reports about him offering to return the donations to Hazare.

The earlier plan was to first seek opinion from people like the way it was done for Jan Lokpal campaign before finally announcing the party.

Senior leaders of the group were also planning to tour the country to gauge the public response to the draft and use their inputs to revise the draft and finalise the party programme.

The party is likely to first test its strength in Delhi assembly polls next year, skipping this year's assembly elections in BJP-ruled Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh.

The question of forming a party had split erstwhile Team Anna vertically with Anna Hazare parting ways with Kejriwal last week. Earlier on August 4, Hazare had announced that he will work towards providing a political alternative without joining any party.

Earlier, the Kejriwal-led group had decided to form a preparatory committee consisting of 80-100 members, including some retired judges, to chalk out the details of formation of the party.

It was also decided that an internal Lokpal, having retired judges as its members, will be constituted to ensure internal discipline within the party. The preparatory committee, however, was not formed despite the plan of having its first meeting on August 26.

Asked about getting Hazare's support, Kejriwal said, "Anna supports anything that is for the benefit of this country. I've a feeling that if we keep on doing our work honestly and sincerely I'm very sure he will join in this effort also.

"It should not be interpreted as a break. He has said all this because he feels that if his name and photograph is used by a political party, in legal terms we are going to be a political party, and then it will be treated as partisan. He wants to stick to a non partisan role," he said.

On reports of him returning money, Kejriwal said, on November 1, there was a surplus of Rs. 1.2 crore and he wrote a cheque of Rs. 1.2 cr in the name of Bhrastachar Birodhi Janandolan.

"Manish took that cheque to Ralegaon Siddhi on November 1 last year. Anna said he had full faith in its proper use and asked us to continue our work. After that whenever there is any news I've asked Anna that if you don't have full faith in me, I will step down from PCRF and someone else can head it.

"After August last year for 8-9 months we did not take any donations. By April-May this year our entire money got exhausted and we had no money to pay our salaries also. That was the time in the presence of Anna that we decided to take donations again. We had put it on our website asking for donations," he said.

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