Team Anna campaigns for ‘no vote’,slams Congress,mum on BJP

This time,however,their focus has shifted from the Lokpal to ‘no vote’.

Written by Ravish Tiwari | Mathura | Published: February 22, 2012 3:57 am

Recovering from the unenthusiastic response to Anna Hazare’s agitation in December,Team Anna members on Tuesday announced that they would tour Uttar Pradesh during the final three phases of the Assembly polls. This time,however,their focus has shifted from the Lokpal to ‘no vote’.

“We are not here to support any political party…. You should go to polling stations and demand Form 17-A from the polling officer to register that you do not want to vote for any of the candidates,” said Team Anna member Manish Sisodia at a rally in Mathura’s Jubilee Park.

Kiran Bedi urged the crowd to reject all the candidates this election,and pave the way for ‘right to reject’. “Election rule number 49-O allows you to go to a polling booth and not vote by registering yourself in Form-17A. This way you will not waste your vote and also not vote for a corrupt person. We have to be ready to launch an agitation for the ‘right to reject’…We must secure a button for ‘right to reject’ on the EVMs before the 2014 Lok Sabha polls. This will ensure that political parties do no field criminal candidates,” she said,adding that UP should enact a Lokpal on the lines of BJP-ruled Uttarakhand.

Addressing the rally under the banner of India Against Corruption,the speakers took potshots at major political parties. However,while they mentioned top Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi,Rahul Gandhi,Digvijaya Singh,P Chidambaram,Kapil Sibal by name,as also SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and BSP supremo Mayawati,in case of the BJP they avoided all top leaders and mentioned only Babu Singh Kushwaha.

“Some people (Rahul Gandhi) are very angry and demanding five years of rule in UP… Recently I read in newspapers that Sonia Gandhi has expressed sorrow over the plight of UP since the Congress has not been in power here…. They are sad because they could not loot UP for 21 years… Rs 5,000 crore worth of health scam happened in UP,but no commission reached the Congress headquarters or to 10 Janpath…. This is the reason for sadness,” Sisodia alleged. “All of you should ask the Congress workers whether they want Rahul Gandhi’s version of Lokpal or Anna Hazare’s version…,” he said.

A crowd had turned up to have a glimpse of Anna and many were heard complaining that they felt “cheated” as Hazare was not present.

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