"As far as Anna Hazareji is concerned, I respect (him) as an important leader who has done a lot of good work in rural development and this is why the whole country respects him," Singh told accompanying journalists while returning from a two-nation tour of China and Kazakhstan.
He was responding when asked whether Hazare's recent fast-unto-death and the accompanying public support reflected erosion of the country's political society.
To another question about his recent statement on "shifting of power" to people and whether it had domestic context also, Singh said "there is both. We have to take note of the fact that pepole's power is something to be reckoned with. It is also happening internationally, in the Middle East, North Africa."
He, however, quickly added that he would not "like to pronounce authoritatively that I have an answer to what has gone wrong in that region."