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Anna Hazare announces new team

Posted on Nov 11, 11:54AM | IBNS

Two months after parting with former colleague Arvind Kejriwal, veteran social activist Anna Hazare on Saturday announced his new core team and said he would commence an anti-corruption campaign from Jan 30 next year.

Hazare met members of the core committee of his new anti-corruption group here to decide on the strategy of his movement against corruption.

"Today, there was a meeting among 13 old members of our group," Hazare said while addressing a press conference after the meeting.

"Soon, there will be a national campaign against corruption. I am going to start a nationwide tour from Jan 30, 2013," he said.

Pertinently, Jan 30 is the death anniversary of the Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi.

Hazare said revolution is needed to change the system.

"Need to unite the country against corruption. Need to launch a revolution to change the system," the Gandhian said.

Speaking on the issue of Jan Lokpal, Hazare said: "The government will have to enact Jan Lokpal before 2014."

He said: "Foreign companies should be stopped from entering the country....Gram sabhas should be given more powers and the right to decide on land acquisition. Privatisation of water and electricity should not be allowed."

Besides Hazare, the new core committee comprised of members like Kiran Bedi, Medha Patkar, Justice Santosh Hegde, Arvind Gaur, Akhil Gogoi, Sunita Godara, Avinash Dharmadhikari, Vishwambhar Chaudhary, Shashi Kant, Lt Col Bijender Khokhar, Rakesh Rafiq, Ran Singh Arya, Shivendra Singh Chauhan and Akshay Kumar.

Speaking on the role of former army general V.K. Singh, Hazare said: "VK Singh is not a member of the new team."

Singh, however, was a special invitee.

Patkar, who was present at the press conference, said there were no difference with Kejriwal over the issue of India Against Corruption (IAC) brand.

"There are no differences with Arvind Kejriwal over who owns the IAC brand," Patkar said.

Former cop turned social activist Kiran Bedi said: "The movement is going to continue and will not stop till our investigating agencies become independent of government control."

Bedi earlier tweeted: "Anna's Core Grp meets today. Each 1 is a personal invitee of Anna. This will b phase 1 of CG! Will spread out nationally for several causes!"

Hazare earlier parted ways with Kejriwal after the later decided to form a political party.

Clarifying the divide in the team, Anna said Kejriwal faction should no longer use his photos and name.