India: Hunger Strike Against Corruption

April 7th, 2011
in Background, econ_news

hazare Econintersect, reported by Sanjeev Kulkarni:

 Anna Hazare (total offial name Kisan Bapat Baburao Hazare) is an Indian social activist who has been campaigning gainst corruption in India's government.  Tuesday, April5, 2011, Hazare started a 'fast unto death' hunger strike to garner attention and support for an act known as the Jan Lokpal bill that would establish an ombudsman to investigate corruption in public office.

Follow up:

Repeated attempts to pass Lokpal bills have failed many times over the past several decades.  The Indian legislative process for such legislation is like a roach motel:  the bills check in but they never check out. 

Sonia Ghandi, President of the Indian National Congress Party has urged Hazare to end his fast.  Her statement as reported in

"There can be no two views on the urgent necessity of combating graft and corruption in public life. I believe that the laws in these matters must be effective and must deliver the desired results. I am sure that Anna Hazare Ji's views will receive the government's full attention as we move forward to fight this menace."

Hazare reacted to to Sonia Gandhi's demand to end his fast by requesting urgent action on the legislation.   According to, Union Minister Kapil Sibal, who is on the Group of Ministers drafting the anti-corruption law, met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh late this evening to discuss ways out of this impasse.

Further from

Since he began his hunger strike on Tuesday, Mr Hazare has become the icon of a nation tired of  discovering how it has been had by the people it elected to power.  The 72-year-old Gandhian said he had no choice but to begin his die-unto-death fast -repeated discussions with the government for a Jan Lokpal Bill  (Citizen's Ombusman Bill) were leading only to more discussion. So Mr Hazare ignored an appeal from the Prime Minister, and began his strike on Tuesday morning, unleashing a people's revolution.

It appears that the government may form a committee combining ministers and citizen members to try to hammer out a compromise on Lokpal that can get enough votes to be enacted.

Sources:  Sonia Ghandi - Wikipedia,  Anna Hazare - WikipediaThe Times of India and 


Sanjeev Kulkarni Sanjeev Kulkarni is an entrepreneur based in Pune, India. He worked for large organizations in board level position before venturing on his own. He is currently involved as an investor in health care software company and as an investor, mentor in an automation company. Very widely traveled, he has experience of working in different geographical areas with people of varying nationalities. He did his BS from Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.


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1 comment

  1. sunil chandra (Member) Email says :


    There is little doubt that Anna Hazare is gradually acquiring, quite deservedly, the status of an icon and people are coming out in hordes to support him in his movement against corruption in public life.

    However, I would like to point out that many of the people (film stars, industrialists, enterpreneurs) speaking up vocally for Anna's cause may themselves not be free from charges of corruption. My first question to these people would be "Do you pay all your taxes honestly?" I am afraid we may find a lot of non-public officials guilty on that count. So why should the fight against corruption be limited to politicians only ? Or why only Governnment employees? Experience tells us that corruption is quite prevalent in the private sector also where the concerned people draw huge salaries from their employers and yet cannot resist an easy buck.

    Therefore, the change has to come to us for the society as a whole. Simply passing new Law Bills may only prove to be a red herring.

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