Hazare puts off proposed hunger strike after Centre agrees to look into his demands
Anti-corruption activist Anna Hazare, on Friday, put his proposed indefinite fast on hold, a day before it was to begin, to press for implementation of the Swaminathan commission recommendations regarding agriculture pricing, statutory status and autonomy for the central agriculture price commission.
Hazare announced that he was not going ahead with the proposed strike on Saturday, after meeting former chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union Minister of State for Agriculture, Kailash Choudhary, at his native place, Ralegan Siddhi, where both assured the crusader that a committe will look into his demands.
Both, Fadnavis and Choudhary, held a marathon discussion with Hazare and assured him that a high power committee will decide on the demands the crusader has put forward.
“Today, the agriculture minister handed over a letter about the committee, which will take a call on 15 demands that I have put forward. In the light of the letter, I have decided to put on hold my proposed strike. I am confident, once the government takes a call on these demands, it will positively impact the lives of farmers,” said Hazare, during the press conference.
Earlier in the day, Choudhary handed him a letter assuring him of the formation of a committee, and the likely members on it.
“After discussing it with Anna, we requested the Centre to announce a high-power committee. As a result of this, the Union Minister of State for Agriculture, Kailash Choudhary, handed Anna a letter and announced that a committee under the chairmanship of Union Agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar with other members from NITI Aayog and names recommended by Anna, will be formed,” said Fadnavis.
According to Fadnavis, the committee will act within six months on the demands made by the crusader. There were other demands also made by Hazare about strengthening Lokpal, which according to Fadnavis, will be looked into.
“Our efforts will be to decide on all the demands made by Hazare within six months. We are confident that Hazare’s recommendations will help farmers in the future,” said Choudhary.
The committee, according to Choudhary, will take a decision on every demand from Hazare.
“I am glad that Hazare has agreed to put on hold his agitation,” Choudhary said.
Earlier on Friday, BJP leader Girish Mahajan held talks with Hazare at Ralegan Siddhi, though the latter was firm on going ahead with agitation. Last week, former chief minister Devendra Fadnavis had also met Hazare though the activist was unfazed at the time.