This is a translation of Anna Hazare’s letter, I have made the effort to translate as I believe there are a considerable amount of NRIs’ who are passionate about what is happening in India but who do not have the means to read Hindi.
A war has now started against corruption, our fight is not against any political party or any politician. We do not want to change the government but we want to change organisational principles. We want India free from corruption.
The people of India wish that a strong ‘lokpal’ law be swiftly created where guilty individuals go to jail, their wealth be ceased, and their employment be removed, are we asking for anything wrong?
For two months there has been discussion but the government is unwilling to even make small steps. The governments conscious is not clean. We have spoken to other political party members, however the government is unwilling to accept the treaty proposed.
If the government does not independently enforce the ‘lok pal’ policy then from the 16 of August I will start my fast. I have on this matter also received threats that [if I should start my fast] I will encounter the same physical atrocities similar to that experienced by Baba Ramdev during his peaceful protest.
Friends, if we do not take this opportunity to fight against corruption, I do not know when we will get this opportunity again? For this war, me and my compatriots are ready to sacrifice in every way. If they wish to arrest us, we will happily go, we will smilingly take the beats but we will not retaliate. If they shoot us, we will happily take the bullets and relinquish our lives, however we will not run away. We are ready in everywhere to sacrifice ourselves.
“If you fast on 16 August you will face atrocities” – These are their words. “We will enforce section 144 on Jantar Mantar” – This is their mentality but I say if every citizen on the 16th of August took some time off from work and went onto the streets, in front of their house etc with the Indian flag in hand and proclaiming ‘Hail to Mother India’, the chance of being injured would be minimum and every citizen will be an Anna Hazare. They can arrest one Anna Hazare but could they arrest 120 crore Anna Hazares? They could enforce section 144 on Jantar Mantar but could they enforce section 144 on the whole of India? And let me tell you the youth of India and the Indian police is with us. During the fast in Raj ghat a number of police gave their assistance and many others.
So will you take some time off on the 16th of August with me and come on the streets? This time the nation is not waiting for the 15th but the 16th of August.