Terming Anna Hazare's decision to campaign against it in the Hisar by-election as "unfortunate", Congress on Tuesday said the government is committed to set up a strong and effective Lokpal and the Gandhian should not have any "pre-conceived notions" on the issue.
"Anna on one hand is saying if Lokpal Bill is not passed in the Winter Session he will start a campaign against Congress. But now he does not want to wait till the Winter Session. It's unfortunate," Congress Spokesperson Rashid Alvi said in New Delhi on Tuesday.
"Every citizen has got the constitutional right to oppose or favour anyone... But even then these statements from Anna Hazare are regretful," he said.
Commenting on the issue, Congress General Secretary Janardhan Dwivedi said Hazare should have faith in the "collective wisdom" of the nation, which is represented by Parliament, on the Lokpal issue.
"Hazare should keep faith in the country's collective wisdom represented by the Parliament of the country. Whenever the Lokpal comes, it will be a strong and effective one. Having any pre-conceived notions on the issue is not correct," he said.
Dwivedi said Congress "trusts" Anna Hazare when he says that he does not have any personal political ambitions and that is why "he should not allow the issue raised by him with good intentions to be misused for political reasons."
The Congress spokespersons were reacting to Hazare's statement that he will appeal to voters in Hisar Lok Sabha constituency in Haryana, where bypoll is scheduled on October 13, to not vote for the Congress candidate as the party was "deliberately" not bringing the Jan Lokpal bill.