Pakistan anti-graft campaigner inspired by Anna protest

Anna Hazare
Islamabad, Aug 19: Inspired by anti-graft campaigner Anna Hazare, a Pakistani businessman says he will soon launch a "fast unto death" against corruption in his country and militarisation of South Asia.

Raja Jahangir Akhtar, 68, said he is hoping that his protest will lead to the introduction of an anti-corruption bill in Pakistan's parliament on the lines of the Lokpal legislation sought by Hazare.

"I had campaigned against corruption in the past but I surrendered. Seeing Anna Hazare and the people of India standing up against corruption has given me the courage to take up this cause again," Akhtar, the owner of a shop in Islamabad's Super Market, told PTI.

Akhtar will begin his fast on September 12, after the end of the Islamic fasting month of Ramzan.

"The Leftists are supporting my protest. I am also banking on people to use the internet and social media to spread my message," he said.

The protest will mainly focus on ending corruption in Pakistan and countering the rapid militarisation in the region.

"I see the people backing Anna Hazare and I want to create a similar situation here," he said.

Akhtar, who has campaigned in the past on issues like rent control in the Pakistani capital, contended that the country's government and the opposition had taken no steps to tackle graft and economic problems like inflation.

"No one has a policy to taken on these issues," he said.

The protest will try to build pressure on Pakistani politicians to introduce an anti-graft law and to ensure cuts in military spending.


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