Describing his detention as the beginning of the “second freedom struggle”, Anna Hazare, on Tuesday, asked people not to let the agitation against corruption fizzle out and urged them to fill jails while his Team termed the police action as a “return of emergency”.
“My dear countrymen, second freedom struggle has begun and now I have also been arrested. But will this movement be stopped by my arrest? No, not at all. Don’t let it happen,” Hazare said in a pre-recorded message.
The 73-year-old Gandhian, who was scheduled to hold a fast against corruption in J P Park, asked people to court arrest and go to jails as part of the country-wide agitation against corruption and to demand a strong Lokpal.
“Time has come my countrymen when there should be no place left in jails in India to accommodate any more persons,” he said while asking people to maintain peace.
“I once again request my fellow countrymen that peace should be maintained and there must be no violence…Crores of people have joined this movement and second line of leaders are standing to lead this movement. There are many who will continue to lead you and this fight will go on,” he said.
Hazare and his close associates in the fight against corruption — Arvind Kejriwal, Kiran Bedi and Shanti Bhushan — were detained this morning as the Gandhian stood adamant on defying prohibitory orders and go ahead with his agitation.
The Hazare team described the detention as the “return of emergency without a formal proclamation” and asked what crime did the Gandhian commit to take him into custody.
“This is return of emergency with out official proclamation. What crime did Anna commit? Unless we unite, we will be imposed by a defective Lokpal which protects corruption. We now need solutions not statements of intentions,” Bedi told.
Hazare said leaders like Kejriwal, Bedi, Prashant Bhushan, Manish Sisodia, Arvind Gaud, PV Rajgopal, Shanti Bhusan and Akhil Gogoi will lead the agitation.
Bedi alleged “somebody else” is behind the police action as the force is capable enough to handle such peaceful protests.
“This has not been done by Delhi Police, somebody else else is behind it. Delhi Police is capable enough to handle such peaceful protests,” she said. “When Anna asked the police about his crime, police said they were following orders,” Bedi added.
On detention of Hazare, she said there is not much difference between detention and arrest.
“What is the difference between detention and arrest? There’s no difference. When you are detained that means you are temporarily arrested and when your freedom is curbed, that is arrest,” she said.