Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Sonia targets BJP, Team Anna


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GAUCHAR-CHAMOLI (U’KHAND): In a veiled attack on BJP and Team Anna, Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday said that corruption cannot be eradicated by mere slogans and those creating “hue and cry” should look within.

Gandhi, in a public address which was read out in her absence, questioned the need for beating the drum over corruption when the government itself had initiated the process of bringing a strong Lokpal bill and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had repeatedly expressed commitment to rid the country of graft.

“Corruption cannot be eradicated merely by talking or by pointing fingers at others. Everybody should look within,” she said. Gandhi also hit out at the alleged double-standards of those raising the issue, saying, “Corruption cannot be eradicated in a manner in which people think that their corruption is very sacred and corruption among others is very bad. These days the same is happening.”

Though she did not name anybody, UPA chairperson was apparently hinting at BJP, whose leader L K Advani is on a Yatra during which he has been repeatedly attacking the government and Congress on corruption.

The Congress President also targeted Team Anna, which has been issuing frequent threats to the government over Lokpal bill. She reminded that the National Advisory Council headed by her was the first to initiate a public debate for bringing a Lokpal bill.

“You also know that the Prime Minister himself, our party repeatedly said that we are in favour of an effective and strong Lokpal bill. The bill will be presented in Parliament and we will implement it. Then I wonder why this hue and cry,” she said.

Taking the battle to the rival camp, Gandhi asked who had enacted and implemented the Right To Information Act or raised the issue of ending corruption and bringing transparency in public life first.

“I can say that we raised it and I myself did it. Wherever complaints were received, we took action even before the completion of the probe,” she asserted in her speech in this far off village of poll-bound Uttarakhand.

Gandhi was to address the public meeting but could not make it due to her ill health. Noting that there is a lot of talk about corruption these days, Gandhi said, “No doubt corruption is prevalent in society in some form or the other” and stressed “an atmosphere needs to be created against it.” (PTI)


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