Hazare silent on Bedi's U-turn

Hazare silent on Bedi's U-turn

Hazare silent on Bedi's U-turn

Anti-corruption activist Anna Hazare literally snubbed Kiran Bedi, his former aide, to show his displeasure at her for joining the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), by not taking her calls and declaring on Wednesday that he would stay away from “political dirt”.

The septuagenarian Gandhian had done the same thing – couple of years ago — when his other aide Arvind Kejriwal floated the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) to fight a political battle. Hazare remained inaccessible for Kejriwal for a few days. Kejriwal and Bedi were part of the India Against Corruption (IAC) movement that Hazare launched in 2011. 

However, now in the Delhi Assembly polls – the two tallest figures are fighting against each other and are engaged in a war of words.  
At one point of time, Anna, Bedi and Kejriwal sat in core committee meetings in Ralegan Siddhi—his village in Ahmednagar —and chalked out future strategies.Hazare’s displeasure was clearly visible when he said he does not want to comment on Bedi’s move. “I want to stay away from political dirt,” he told reporters in a brief chat at Ralegan Siddhi. 
On being asked to react to Bedi’s move and over reports he refused to take calls from her, Hazare said: “I do not wish to comment.”
Bedi, after being declared a CM-candidate on being asked about Hazare, had said: “I called Annaji on telephone, sometimes he was sleeping and sometimes he was taking rest. I tried calling Annaji…and would call again.”

To repeated queries, the 77-year-old veteran again said: “Please keep me away…..I do not want to get into political dirt.” 

In December 2013, when AAP decided to form government in Delhi, Hazare had taken the same stand of not making any remark. “Let them do what they think good, I do not wish to comment,” he said.

On the issue of Jan Lokpal, he said that he would decide the future course of action after the Delhi polls.

While his closest aides have taken the political path, Hazare, a former soldier, has managed to stay away from politics. 

Before the Lok Sabha elections last year, another aide Gen (Retd) V K Singh, the former chief of Army Staff joined the BJP, fought and won the Lok Sabha elections, and he is now the Minister of State for External Affairs and Minister of State (Independent Charge for North East Region).