January 5, 2014

13 Days That Changed India

Im Anna

Design & People on "I'm Anna" 
Why I'm Anna, Not A Parliamentarian

Design & People believes that if Anna Hazare has managed to unite the entire nation in less than thirty days during his last agitation for a meaningful Lokpal Bill, it is simply because he spoke the language of the ordinary Indians, not the language of the elite and the affluent class of this country. English was replaced with Hindi; babus with activists; hypocrisy with simplicity; cowardice with courage and finally — words with action. We believe that victory or failure is not very important in struggles for the goodness of a nation. Read a writeup by Aadarsh Prakash, a student from the Delhi University on "Why I Am Anna" which will make us understand why one should be with Anna, not the so-called Parliamentarians.

I'm Anna because he brought thousands of people out of the serenity of their houses into scorching heat of public places, which were noisy and full of mud and rain water, to fight for their rights — their right to tell the government that they want a strong system to prevent and fight corruption, to castigate those who are guilty of stealing our money. I'm Anna because he didn't use any means of violence as his weapon. Indeed, he used the mahatma's non-violence — a weapon that doesn't destroy life but changes society. I'm Anna because he did not denigrate democracy. He never asked the Prime Minister to step down; neither did he ask the ruling party to quit power. He only reminded the government that the people are the masters of the land.

I'm Anna because he does not belong to any political party; his acts are not in favour of any party. He did not discriminate people on the basis of religion, caste, creed or sex. I don't remember any name or religion of the person around me while shouting "mai bhi anna tu bhi anna ab to sara desh hai anna" in Ramlila Maidan. I knew only one thing — they were my friends, Indians and countrymen. I'm Anna because he is one of those people who gave up food so that the poor can have food, without caring about his health or age or even his life.

I'm Anna because once again he made us realise that we are a nation, we are united. John Lawrence rightly remarked on the first War of Independence "Had a single leader of ability arisen among them (the rebels) we (British) must have been lost beyond redemption." We had an able leader with us this time and that is why we won the battle. But the war remains to be tackled.

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