Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal has said corruption is one the major factors behind farmer suicides in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra, and the Jan Lokpal Bill will bring relief to the distressed peasants.
“Despite whooping amounts sanctioned by the government to curb suicides in the region, it is not reaching the needy farmers because of corruption,” Kejriwal, who was in Amravati to address a public meeting organised by People for India Forum at Shivaji BPEd College, said last evening.
Farmers are not getting proper price for their cotton; the prices have been kept low deliberately, it’s all happening because of corruption, he said.
Kejriwal said he was not claiming that all agrarian crises will end after introduction of Janlokpal bill, “but it will definitely give some relief to distressed farmers. I can assure that farmers will not commit suicides.”
On the Nagpur incident, he accused the media of spreading “false stories” about the programme, even though it was held properly. “When I learnt that some people waived black flags I requested volunteers to call those people who’re demonstrating at the venue but when our volunteers reached there, police had nabbed them. Those people are also part of our country and I wanted to talk to them but before that police rounded them up,” Kejriwal said.
He appealed to the media to exercise refrain or else it spoils the atmosphere.
Speaking about the controversial blog and Raju Parulekar’s claim that Anna wanted to remove Kejriwal and others from the team, he said: “I don’t know why Raju made this statement. There are no differences between Anna and me. Only he (Raju) can explain better (about the issue).”
Blogger and journalist Parulekar had claimed that the veteran Gandhian wanted to remove “undemocratic and fascist” Kejriwal, Kiran Bedi, Prashant Bhushan and “their pawns” from his core group.
The fallout between Hazare and Parulekar came as the former claimed that he never ever spoke to the journalist or met him on the issue of re-structuring the Core Committee and forming a new Pan-Indian organisation with immediate effect.
Talking about why Anna felt the need to reconstitute the core committee, Kejriwal said that “we want reconstitution so that more people could come in to make a strong Lokpal. The Core Committee will be formed in the next two to three months.”