Anna Hazare's hunger strike enters 7th day; Fadnavis, 2 Union Ministers meet him
Ralegan Siddhi (Maharashtra), Feb 05: Anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare's indefinite hunger strike entered seventh day on Tuesday. Hazare has been on a hunger strike since last Wednesday (January 30) at his native Ralegan Siddhi village in Maharashtra's Ahmednagar district, demanding appointments of Lokpal and Lokayuktas and resolution of farmers' issue.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh and Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre met Hazare at Ralegan Siddhi today.
Hazare has been demanding appointment of Lokpal at the Centre and Lokayuktas in states where such statutory anti-corruption watchdogs do not exist. He has also been demanding implementation of the Swaminathan Commission recommendations on ways to address agrarian distress, besides electoral reforms.
The anti-corruption crusader had told PTI that he welcomed the Maharashtra cabinet's decision to bring the office of the chief minister under the ambit of the Lokayukta.
On Monday, MNS chief Raj Thackeray met the 81-year-old anti-graft crusader and extended his full support to his agitation. Urging the social activist to end his hunger strike, Thackeray asked the 81-year-old not to sacrifice his life for the "useless" government. He asked Hazare to end his protest and conduct a joint tour of the state with him to "bury" the BJP-led government. Thackeray was accompanied by noted water conservationist Rajendra Singh.
Hazare had on Sunday warned that if the Narendra Modi government did not fulfil its promises, he would return his Padma Bhushan. The 81-year-old was awarded the third-highest civilian honour of the country in 1992.
Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray had earlier appealed to the BJP-led state government -- of which his party is a part -- to intervene and asked it to not to "play" with Hazare's life. Thackeray also asked Hazare to take to the streets instead of "giving up" his life, and urged him to emulate the role played by Narayan in the 1970s when the socialist leader took on the Indira Gandhi government.