Anna stays away from UP poll

Team Anna’s Uttar Pradesh campaign  on the Lokpal bill has remained a phenomenon which lacks impact. The campaign has been abandoned by team leaders like Arvind Kejriwal, Prashant Bhushan and other important members of the Core Committee of India Against Corruption (IAC) including Medha Patkar.

Anna Hazare with members of his team after meeting the Chief Election Commissioner in New Delhi. AFP

The team actively campaigning in poll–bound UP is mainly being led by Kiran Bedi and Manish Sisodia. A few other members of the Core Committee like Gopal Rai and Kumar Vishwas have attended some of the public meetings, while Sanjay Singh, a local graft activist is coordinating it.

The state, which was chosen to be the base of vigorous canvassing against the UPA government and the Congress for failing to enact a strong Lokpal bill, does not seem to be responding to the issue. The IAC’s campaign has hardly created a stir. The Lokpal bill is neither on the list of hotly debated issues nor does it make the headlines.

After high voltage deliberations in Parliament and Anna’s fast failing in Mumbai, the IAC had taken a while to decide their course of action and whether to campaign in the poll–bound states. A month ago, Anna’s associates brought out a detailed program for UP and Uttarakhand.

Contrary to their public proclamation of not targetting the Congress, Team Anna’s literature shows a clear bias towards the Congress and an aversion to Mayawati and Mulayam, while showing leniency toward the BJP.

The team began its campaign in Uttarakhand under Arvind Kejriwal’s leadership, but he seems to have stayed away since. “Arvind was with Anna during his treatment in Bangalore, and Prashant Bhushan was busy with some important court cases. So, both of them could not participate in the UP campaign.” the spokesperson of the IAC Ashwathi Muralidharan told Deccan Herald.

Team Anna meets CEC

 Anna Hazare and his team members met the Chief Election Commissioner S Y Quresh on Thursday and demanded that the 'right to reject' option be included in Electronic Voting Machines (EVM), reports DHNS from New Delhi.

He also demanded that two Election Commissioners be given constitutional status like the Chief Election Commissioner.

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