The agenda of Anna hazare hunger strike of 2018 has shifted from the issue of the middle class to the suffering of the agrarian section of the country. The current indefinite hunger strike that Anna had started is different from the anti-graft agitation of 2011 and is against the central Government which began after seven years of the protest that had started in 2011.
It began on 23rd of March 2018 on the Delhi's Ramlila Maidan and this time is in support of the growing sufferings that the farmer community of the country is going through. Anna had promised to sit on hunger strike till his demands are fulfilled; setting up of Lokpal in the states as well as in the centre is one of his demands. Also, he is demanding to implement the Swaminathan Commission report which aims at mending the crisis going on the lives of farmers in India.
Here's the demand list of the protesters as shown by one of the participants……
The hunger strike had not gained the much anticipated momentum for the bigger issue of improving the deteriorating condition of farmers in different parts of the country. The rising number of farmers suicide, disappointing minimum support price, the recent protest by farmers from different parts of the country and Swaminathan recommendations should have provided impetus to Anna's hunger strike but that has not been done.
The moment had hardly summoned support from 3000 people from around the country and only scattered groups of people can be seen on the venue occasionally chanting slogans as a means of showing their support for farmers. During the 2011 protest, there were bigger names, which have generated huge number of following. This year these names have not been included probably to avoid the Anna's name being used for their personal gain.
People who have joined the moment are not all from the farmer background, people have come with their set of problem and they have been told that Anna will find solution to their problems. The organizers though believe that people here may have come with different agendas but all of us are standing in solidarity for one cause chiefly for the decentralization of power.
Some facts about the 2011 Hunger strike led by the octogenarian Anna Hazare
The 2011 protest of Anna Hazare was a gigantic one and that it had attracted huge flock of people from all age group. The previous protest was in favor of the anti-graft bill called Jan Lokpal Bill (The Citizen Ombudsman Bill), which is designed to form an autonomous body that will make beurocrats and politicians to take accountability for their deeds. It is basically aimed at curbing corruption in India.
Initially, this bill was proposed by Mr. Shanti Bhushan, the law minister in the year 1972 and from that time it has been neglected by many ministers probably to hide their own corruption. Anna Hazare in his protest of 2011 demanded that a joint committee be formed which must have 50% participation by the Government and 50 % by the public. And, this committee should be responsible for drafting the bill because it is hard to trust the Government for drafting such a bill.
According to the bill there will be a Lokpal at the center and the body will be rendered with autonomy just like the election commission of India. And, also there will be one Lokyukta in every state to start proceedings against the alleged parties and take action within 1 year and punish the guilty within 2 years. This will solve many underlying issues of delay in rendering punishment to the guilty like in case of the Bhopal Gas tragedy that took around 25 years to pronounce judgment against the guilty.