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Lokpal would have prevented Rafale scam, says Anna Hazare

Veteran anti-graft crusader Anna Hazare on Monday attacked the Centre saying that the Rafale “scam” would not have happened if the Lokpal was in place. Simultaneously he announced an indefinite hunger strike from January 30 over his unmet demands for farmers and implementation of the anti-corruption law.

Mr Hazare slammed the Centre for not implementing the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013 despite an order of the Supreme Court, saying he felt the country was in “danger” of slipping towards “autocracy”. This will be his third hungerstrike over the demand of Lokpal in the last eight years. Leading civil society members and groups, he sat on an indefinite hunger strike at the Ramleela ground here for the first time in April 2011.

“If Lokpal was there, scam like Rafale would not have happened. I have plenty of papers on Rafale and I will hold a separate press conference after studying it for two days. One thing I do not understand how a company formed a month ago before the deal was made partner in it,” Hazare said at a press conference.

He will start his hungerstrike at his village Ralegan Siddhi on January 30 and will continue it till the government meets his demands.

“In the past the government said in writing that they will implement Lokpal law and provide pensions and 1.5 times of minimum support price to the farmers but did nothing. Now I will not have any more false assurances and continue the hunger strike till there is life in my body,” he said. In March last year, Hazare along with his supporters held a week-long hungerstrike at the Ramleela ground.

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