Anna arrest should have been handled more tactfully

New Delhi : Days after describing Anna Hazare as an RSS mask, senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh today called the Gandhian a `simple, good, well-meaning man` and said the issue of his arrest should have been handled more tactfully.

"The matter (Anna`s arrest) should have been handled more tactfully. Anything else that I`ve to say about it, I`ll say it directly to my leader," the Congress General Secretary said in an interview to a news channel.

"When I say more tactfully I mean for example: why were the opposition parties not involved in the drafting process (of Lokpal). We made an unprecedented move, and we made it just out of respect for Anna. But why leave the opposition out, it made the BJP very angry," he said.

Showering praise over the Gandhian, Singh said he is a simple man who has unknowingly fallen into the trap of RSS.

"I have known Anna from the time the media didn`t know him. I made him member Madhya Pradesh Planning Board. He did some great work. He is a simple, good, well-meaning man. But he has been misled. Anna has unwittingly become a front of the RSS. Anna is a Gandhian but he enjoys support of the RSS. I never called him an agent, but a front," he clarified.

"He (Anna) has unwittingly fallen into that trap. Anna has been used by the RSS. I have letter of RSS support to Anna. They had RSS support, that now is an established fact," the Congress leader said.

However, Singh did not tone down his tirade against Team Anna member Arvind Kejriwal

"I attacked double standards of Kejriwal. He took a study leave. He said he will return. Why did he not? He accepted donations from abroad while he was still a government servant.

Did he take permission from the government to start his NGO? He wants us to follow the rules, I think as a govt employee he too should have followed them," he said.

Singh also took a swipe at L K Advani over his proposed Rath Yatra saying he must start from Ahmedabad and take it through all BJP-ruled states to find out the "level of corruption that is there".

Trashing Arun Jaitley`s jibe of too many lawyers advising the government, the Congress general secretary said, "If that`s a problem, then Arun Jaitley should stop advising the BJP."

Dismissing BJP`s opposition to the proposed Communal Violence Bill as part of the party`s communal agenda, Singh said, "Communal disturbances happen due to inflammatory statements. Who gains the most from them? It?s the BJP."

However, when asked about Mamata Banerjee`s note of dissent to the bill, Singh just said the content of the legislation can still be discussed.

He also came out strongly in support of beleaguered former Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh, saying, "I have full support for Amar Singh. He?ll prove his innocence. Every man is innocent until he is proven guilty."

Even as he hit at some for making inflammatory speeches, he defended his tirade against RSS, saying he has never played politics over terror.

"I have never politicized the issue. I have always said religious fundamentalists give inflammatory speeches that incites terror. I have never interfered with a police probe.

Even in Batala House I questioned the encounter not the probe.