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Set to begin his fast for a strong Lokpal in Mumbai on Tuesday, Anna Hazare on Monday said the repeated volte-face by the government over the issue had forced him to fast again.
'The result was again a U-turn'
"They formed a joint committee and then in the joint committee they did a U-turn. They formed a standing committee but the result was again a U-turn," Hazare told reporters before he left for Mumbai to begin his three-day fast.
'This movement had to be launched'
"A written assurance was sent by the prime minister that the Bill would be passed in Parliament but even there the government did a U-turn," he said.
"In spite of being asked not once but several times, they (government) are still not creating an anti-corruption law. Out of compulsion, this movement had to be launched," he said.
'My agitation is against corruption'
Hazare claimed his movement was not against any political party.
"My agitation is not against any political party, it is against corruption," he said.
'Congress people feel this movement is against them'
"For 25 years, we have been fighting corruption. Congress people feel this movement is against them. Tell us how many times in 25 years have we led movements against you," he said.
'People fought for RTI Act'
Hazare said the government had brought only one law against corruption post Independence and that was the Right to Information Act. For that too, said the social activist, people had to fight for ten years.
Hazare to start his rally in Juhu
On Tuesday, after garlanding Mahatama Gandhi's statue in Juhu, a rally would move towards the MMRDA ground, where Hazare sit on his protest fast.
'Politicians don't know what is happening to the poor people'
He said people from various parts of Maharashtra will come to Mumbai while people from states across India will reach Delhi's Ram Lila Maidan, despite the cold there, to join the protest.
"What is happening to the poor, they (politicians) don't know because they are in air-conditioned rooms 24 hours a day," Hazare said.
'We will have a dharna outside Sonia Gandhi's residence'
"On the 27, 28, 29 there will be a protest fast on the MMRDA ground in Mumbai. On the 30th we will have a dharna outside Sonia Gandhi's residence. That dharna will go on for three days," he said.
'We are not afraid of death'
Apprehending that the government may use force against him and his supporters, he said, "We know the government is very powerful. Everyone saw what they did to Ramdev. In the middle of the night, sleeping women were hit with lathis. We know that such a thing could be done to us as well but we are not afraid of death."
'There is great strength in non-violence'
Hazare also requested his supporters, especially the youth, to observe non-violence.
"Some people will try to create obstacles but my request is that there should be no violence. There is great strength in non-violence," Hazare said.
'Youth should not forget Bhagat Singh, Rajguru'
"Youth are our national strength. I was a youth when I decided that I have to do something and it became possible now. The youth should not forget Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev who sacrificed so much for the country," he added.
Hazare has been unwell
Replying to reporters' queries, Hazare said he has been unwell for a couple of days due to too much activity but had recovered before the protest fast.
Hazare leaves for Mumbai
Meanwhile, the anti-corruption crusader today left his village for Mumbai for his fast in support of a strong Lokpal.
Hundreds of villagers gathered to see him off as he left by road for Alandi, where he paid tribute at Sant Dnyaneshwar Samadhi, before reaching Mumbai tonight.
Kejriwal, Bedi to fast alongside Hazare
The fast, to be followed by a jail bharo campaign, is being held at the MMRDA ground at suburban Bandra-Kurla Complex, where key Team Anna members Arvind Kejriwal and Kiran Bedi are scheduled to fast along with him.