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How Long Can Politicians Avoid Anna Hazare Movement In India?

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Politicians often don't listen to the people they are supposed to be serving. If they did, they'd never get any work done.

In the US, the Congress and presidents have done this for years, except at those times the cacophony becomes so loud they can't ignore it any more.

At least that is the theory. At the last US election, the people spoke loud and clear, as they elected many "Tea Party" politicians to serve them. Unfortunately, President Obama, the Democrats and quite a few Republicans are carrying on with business as usual.

In India, the politicians have more constituents, so it has been much more important for them to ignore the noise, so they can get their work done. In India, the work of politicians is so important that they feel the need to not only ignore the people, but carry on allowing - possibly even taking part in - massive corruption.

The people of India have had enough.

gandhian-supporter
A Gandhian style Anna Hazare supporter, posing during the anti corruption Movement in New Delhi, India.
Photo: Puneet Sharma/NewsBlaze/AIP, supporting NewsBlaze Journalist Adil Akhzer

After a false start, in which they thought they'd made an impression on the politicians, it soon became clear that although the noise was heard, the politicians were just going back to their time-tested ways. That means carrying on with corruption and ignoring the people.

Anna Hazare, who helped get the attention of the politicians earlier this year, realized nothing was ever going to change unless the politicians - even the Prime Minister, Manmohan Singh - had a cowpat slapped in their face and another jammed up their noses.

Being a Gandhian peace activist, of course, Hazare was never going to do anything violent, so cowpats were out of the question.

The demonstrations and death by fasting aren't violent, but they may as well be, because they are finally gaining massive attention. This just shows what can be achieved if you rally enough people and you have an elegant message.

You need enough people because you have to make a lot of noise and you have to cause major disruption. Only when that happens, can you get the attention of the mainstream media. They have the power to reach many more people than NewsBlaze or other independent media such as The American Chronicle can. At the same time, you have to get the attention of the politicians, otherwise, they will just ignore the mainstream media too.

Anna Hazare has all of that, but still the politicians and the Prime Minister of India are doing their best to ignore him and all his followers. Their strategy appears to be "ignore, minimize and belittle," because it has worked before.

There is a very good reason they are ignoring him. It is called stonewalling. That is what politicians and others do when they are as guilty as sin and there is no way they can win, so they just try to outlast the protest.

What possible reason could cause PM Manmohan Singh to stonewall and ignore the people? Is he guilty of corruption? I don't know, but he was recentrly embarassed by his overwhelming support for a corupt official to the Central Vigilance Commission. Possibly he is protecting others or the parliamentary system, but certainly, he wants the Lokpal (Ombudsman) Bill to not cover the Prime Minister.

It is possibly either one, or even both. He may just not "get it" - yet. But that makes no sense, because a good Prime Minister would surely want his people to have the utmost confidence in him and the system he leads. It does a leader no good at all to be in the position of "leader," if the people have no confidence that he is on their side or has their best interests at heart. The absolute worst thing a good leader can do is ignore his people.

It seems like a big game, with all spoils going to the elected men and women, no matter what the people want, no matter what the people say.

It must stop.

It will probably stop, because no matter what the politicians want, the people this time appear to have the upper hand and will not likely give in easily.

You know things are really bad when even militants announce they are supporting a peace activist.

Here are some Anna Hazare stories NewsBlaze writers published this year. The photos show people boldly displaying their point of view.

India Needs 'Jan Lokpal Bill' to Stem Corruption
5 Apr 2011 - From April 5, 2011, noted social activist and Padmabhushan and Padmashree awardee Anna Hazare has begun his fast-unto-death in New Delhi to ...
Publish Date: 04/05/2011 09:28
 
Who is This Man, Anna Hazare, Can He Clean Up Corrupt India?

This is a defining moment for India that can give our children a better future! Let us unite and stand by Anna Hazare!
Publish Date: 04/06/2011 16:58

Rising Resentment against Corruption in India

Living in a corrupt political system for decades, conscious citizens are demanding more participation in governance. In fact, soon after civil society activist Kisan Bapat Baburao Hazare (Anna Hazare), 72, fasted in the national ...
Publish Date: 04/08/2011 08:18

Citizens Fight for 'Zero Tolerance for Corruption'

10 Apr 2011 - Citizens hope that this campaign led by Anna Hazare will cleanse a system. Citizens have clearly voted and come out as strongly as they ...
Publish Date: 04/10/2011 06:42
 
Ready to Face Any Question in Parliament: Indian PM

Commenting on Anna Hazare, the prominent social activist who is scheduled to start his indefinite hunger strike on August 16, Prime Minister Singh said the Lokpal Bill's fate will be decided by Parliament. "As you know, we ...
Publish Date: 08/01/2011 21:50
 
Corruption: Eminent Activist to go on Indefinite Fast In India

US State Department spokesperson, Victoria Nuland, on Saturday advised India's External Affairs ministry on how India should exercise 'democratic restraint' in dealing with the Anna Hazare anti-corruption campaign.
Publish Date: 08/15/2011 1:09
 
Anti Corruption Protest in Pictures

Now, activists Anna Hazare, Arvind Kejriwal and others have been willing to put their lives on the line to shame the politicians into doing something about it. Surprisingly, the politicians think they can just put off the activists as ...
Publish Date: 08/18/2011 20:54
 
Thousands of People on Roads in India Support Anti Corruption Movement

New-Delhi: The Support for prominent social activist Anna Hazare and his team grew wider and louder on Wednesday as thousands of people came on Indian roads to support Hazare in his anti-corruption movement. ...
Publish Date: 08/18/2011 14:57
 
Anna Hazare video from Tihar compound recorded by Dr. Kiran Bedi

Anna Hazare's message to the people of India from Tihar prison compound, recorded by Dr. Kiran Bedi on August 18, 2011

 
Indian Activist Anna Hazare Begins Indefinite Fast Amid Huge Support

Anna, who has brought the government to its knees, is demanding a strong Lokpal Bill. This evening, while threatening to intensify the movement, Anna Hazare says Indian people should not lose the sprit.
Publish Date: 08/20/2011 20:34

Photos Of Muddy Lokpal Bill Demonstration Supporting Anna Hazare

Another day, more corruption, another government delay, another protest. Anna Hazare and his supporters are not giving up. The pressure on the government is mounting.
Publish Date: 08/20/2011 0:30

Anna Hazare Gets Support From Extremist Group For His Noble Cause

It is a fact that Hazare's campaign was instrumental in the implementation of the Right to Information Act in Maharashtra, considered to be one of the best RTI Acts in India.
Publish Date: 08/20/2011 18:23

Photos Of Muddy Lokpal Bill Demonstration Supporting Anna Hazare

Another day, more corruption, another government delay, another protest. Anna Hazare and his supporters are not giving up. The pressure on the government is mounting.
Publish Date: 08/20/2011 08:00

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