Vilasrao Deshmukh meets Hazare; appeals him to end fast

Vilasrao Deshmukh
New Delhi, Aug 25: Amidst efforts to break the deadlock between government and Anna Hazare team, senior Maharashtrian leader and Union Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh today (Aug 25) met the Gandhian to appeal to him to end his fast.

Following a meeting of Congress Parliamentary Party, where some members felt that leaders from Maharashtra should be roped in to talk to the 74-year-old Gandhian, Deshmukh drove to Ramlila Maidan to meet Hazare but maintained that it was "in his personal capacity."

"I met Anna Hazare to request him to end fast following the appeal by Parliament and the Prime Minister," he told reporters after briefing Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee about his 15-minute meeting with Hazare.

Describing his meeting with Hazare as "personal", the minister said he went there as so many people from Maharashtra were there. "Many people from my place is there, the sarpanch and others. We are also concerned about his health. Our efforts is to end his fast soon. We are trying everything that we can," Deshmukh said.

As former Maharashtra Chief Minister, Deshmukh has dealt with protests organised by Hazare in the state and there was a view that his experience could home in handy in dealing with the situation.

Earlier, a BJP delegation led by its General Secretary J P Natta met Hazare and handed him a letter by party president Nitin Gadkari who also appealed to the Gandhian to end his fast. "We have told Hazare that our party will support a strong Lokpal bill and that are solidly behind him in this campaign," he said.


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