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Skipped Mamata Banerjee's rally because of low turnout: Anna Hazare

Saturday, 15 March 2014 - 6:44am IST | Place: New Delhi | Agency: dna

Social activist Anna Hazare on Friday made a U-turn on his support to the West Bengal chief minister led Trinamool Congress, and also blamed his key aide, Santosh Bhartiya, for misleading him – thereby indicating cracks within his team. Within a month of announcing support to Banerjee, Anna on Friday retracted saying that his support is only for Mamata and not his party.

Sources in the team Anna claim that that the social activist's statement is a part of a conspiracy by their opponents. Meanwhile, his close aide, Bharatiya told dna, "A month ago, he had said that he would support Mamata. Now what does not supporting the party mean? His claims are baseless. Mamata won't even contest the elections. He had only issued his 17-point agenda to various political parties." "In such a circumstance, those working closely with him will indeed lose morale," Bhartiya added.

Sources in Team Anna say on condition of anonymity that Gandhian is a spent force now. "If his face does not pull crowds any more, how are we responsible," claimed an associate on condition of anonymity. "I skipped the rally because I was misled. I endorse Mamata Banerjee individually, but do not endorse any political party," Anna said on Friday.

"When I came to Delhi, by noon I found out there were only 2,000 or 2,500 people in the rally. I thought that something is amiss as there were not even 4,000 people in Ramlila ground even though it was teeming with people when I had staged protests there. This was the mistake, this was the dhokhadhadi (deceit)," he said, while naming one of the organisers for it.

On the day of the rally, his aides had claimed that he could not attend the rally because he was "unwell".

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