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Team Anna breaks fast, takes political plunge

Friday, 3 August 2012 - 5:52pm IST Updated: Friday, 3 August 2012 - 8:44pm IST | Place: New Delhi | Agency: PTI

The anti-corruption crusader has made his intentions clear saying that he will not contest elections but support his team members.

Team Anna today took the political plunge, declaring their plans to form a party to fight the 2014 Lok Sabha polls but Anna Hazare made it clear that he will not launch a party or contest elections.

Ending their ten-day fast at Jantar Mantar, the team declared that "people" will decide on their candidates and fund their elections.

"We will have to throw this government out. It is a long fight. This is not a party. It will be a movement from the streets to Parliament. Parliament has to be purified. There will be no high command. People will decide the candidates and they will fund it.

"What should be the name of the party? What should be the structure of the party? All these, we want your suggestions," Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal announced to the cheering supporters.

He said they will not draft manifesto in air-conditioned rooms but would go around the country to know about the difficulties of people.

After the fast, Team Anna member Kumar Vishwas said it would be a national party under the directions of Hazare who would decide its policies.

Today's declaration by Team Anna marks a transformation of the civil society movement which started as an anti- corruption crusade 16 months ago for a Lokpal Bill and ending up with plans for a political run.

The fast, which was ended by former Army chief Gen V K Singh giving cocunut water to Hazare and others, was called off in the light of government steadfastly refusing to enter into a dialogue with them on their demand for Lokpal or a special investigation team of retired judges to probe allegations against 15 Union Ministers.

Endorsing Kejriwal's declaration for a political alternative, Hazare said he will not launch a party or fight elections.

"I will go around the country for the next one and half years to give an alternative. We have another two years left (for the elections) and I will awaken the people. I am confident that people will support the alternative," he said.

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