'Anna, Kejriwal autocratic, are politicising campaign'
A day after he quit Team Anna, activist Rajendra Singh accused Anna Hazare and Arvind Kejriwal of autocratic behaviour and expressed unhappiness over politicisation of the India Against Corruption campaign. Urvashi Dev Rawal reports.jaipur Updated: Oct 20, 2011 02:03 IST
A day after he quit Team Anna, activist Rajendra Singh accused Anna Hazare and Arvind Kejriwal of autocratic behaviour and expressed unhappiness over politicisation of the India Against Corruption campaign.
In an exclusive interview to HT, Singh said, "I have left the core team. But I will continue to campaign against corruption in various spheres of life."
Singh, a Magsaysay award winner for his work on water conservation in Rajasthan, and Gandhian PV Rajagopal quit Team Anna, following their disagreement over team members campaigning against the Congress in the Hisar by-poll.
Singh said Anna and Kejriwal did not discuss the Hisar issue with anyone and went ahead and supported one candidate even though he, as well as the others contesting the poll, was corrupt.
He said the team's campaign against the Congress and alignment with one particular candidate did not leave him and Rajagopal with any option other than to quit.
"I have been working at the grassroots level for the past 30 years and never got into politics. This kind of party politics is dangerous," he said.
In the last few weeks, there have been reports of a rift in Team Anna, as members like Swami Agnivesh, Justice Santosh Hegde and Prashant Bhushan have been sidelined.
Singh said the campaign against corruption could not be restricted to bribes. "Industrialists are given our common property like land, forests and water at cheap rates and they misuse and pollute them. Is that not corruption?" he asked.
He also said people had associated with the campaign because they agreed with the cause. "They (the public) saw Anna as an honest person, but Anna and Kejriwal thought they could do as they please."
He added, "The government said it will bring the Lokpal Bill in the winter session of Parliament. Anna and his team should have waited instead of starting a campaign right now before winter."