Social activist Anna Hazare on Wednesday announced plans to launch an indefinite hunger strike from October 2 in Delhi for implementation of the ‘One Rank One Pension’ (OROP) for ex-servicemen and against the contentious land acquisition bill.
“I will launch my fast at Ramlila Maidan in the capital from October 2 on these issues,” Hazare told media persons in Ralegan-Siddhi.
Prior to the hunger strike, the 78-year-old former army driver will honour war widows and mothers of martyred defence personnel in Delhi on “Shahid Din” on July 26, he said.
This will mark the start of awareness rallies of farmers and retired defence personnel all over the country.
Hazare recently wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on both the issues, but said there has been no response from the government.
In his letter, he stressed the need to take care of soldiers and farmers, and said making hollow announcements for their welfare and implementing them are two different things.
Reiterating that his agitation was non-political, Hazare said that in a democracy the government must pay heed to the problems of the masses and resolve them.
With his proposed agitation, Hazare will return to the national capital after nearly four years when he first sat on a hunger strike at Ramlila Maidan in June 2011 to press for the implementation of the Lokpal Bill.
Earlier, in an audio message to the ex-servicemen on Wednesday, Hazare said he would join them in their protest against delay in implementation of the OROP at Jantar Mantar in Delhi on the occasion of ‘Vijay Diwas’ on July 26.
He said a rally would be taken out on ‘Vijay Diwas’, the day which commemorates the 1999 Kargil war victory.
“On July 26, Vijay Diwas is being celebrated… We won the war because of those who were martyred at Kargil,” Hazare said in the audio message.
“On this occasion, taking up the issue of One Rank One Pension, I will come to Jantar Mantar in Delhi for a ‘Sena Samman’ rally,” he said, giving a call to all former soldiers and farmers to attend the rally.
“Former soldiers and farmers should participate in the rally in large numbers,” he said. (IANS)