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Lokpal fiasco: After Anna’s PM dare,Congress calls him ‘unelected dictator’

Party termed Anna's language 'violent',said he was mask of forces out to destabilise country.

In a stepped-up attack on Anna Hazare and the BJP-RSS,the Congress on Monday dubbed the Gandhian as an “unelected dictator” who is reading the script of forces

attempting to destabilise the country.

“ The greatest danger to the democracy is from the unelected dictator… If democracy faces its biggest peril,it is from the tyranny of the unelected and tyranny of the unelectable,” party spokesman Manish Tewari told reporters without naming Hazare or the BJP or RSS.

When told he was describing Hazare as an “unelected dictator”,Tewari said: “These are not my words… I have made a generic statement.”

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Earlier in the day,anna and his team had shot off a letter to the Prime Minister wondering why an honest Prime Minister like Singh should be scared to come under the purview of an independent ombudsman.

Apparently sending the message to Hazare and his colleagues not to take the engagement with the government for granted,he said there can be only one veto in Indian democracy and that is in the hands of people and “not any one individual”.

Hitting out at civil society representatives led by Hazare,Tewari said there has been “violence in language” of those who have been claiming to be Gandhians and it appears they have been reading the script of forces out to destabilise the country.

As Congress leaders have been accusing Hazare and Ramdev of being ‘masks’ of the BJP-RSS for sometime,Tewari conceded there has been a change of the party’s attitude towards them once it was known that they were “instruments of forces attempting to destabilise the country”.

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On the controversial statement of party General Secretary Digvijay Singh favouring the inclusion of the Prime Minister in the proposed Lokpal Bill,Tewari said Singh has already clarified that it was his personal view.

Taking strong exception to Hazare’s threat to go on an indefinite hunger strike from August 16,Tewari wondered whether it was democratic to talk about such threats when one is engaged in a dialogue with the government. He said the attitude of “my way or highway” is not proper.

“ I think a constructive discourse entails restraint on either side. It cannot be a one-way street. You cannot call the government a bunch of frauds and cheats. You are talking to a sovereign government representing 1.2 billion people,” he said.

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Congress’ attack came a day after Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee had assailed Hazare for his demand for videographing the meeting of the joint committee to draft the Lokpal Bill. Mukherjee heads the Committee.

Maintaining that by such diatribes against the government,Hazare and his colleagues were “insulting the electorate”,he said it showed the “contempt” in which they hold the government.

On various demands of Hazare including the inclusion of the Prime Minister and the Supreme Court in the purview of the proposed Lokpal Bill,Tewari suggested the idea that the Lokpal would be a panacea for all problems was wrong.

“ Today,78 per cent of the gross domestic product does not come from the government sector and we are for a regulatory mechanism for the next two decades. It should have an overarching design of the Lokpal,judges accountability bill,(as also to take care of) paid news,private treaties and cross holdings in the media,money brought to the political process.”

First published on: 13-06-2011 at 20:00 IST
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