Hazare to move SC against any Ramlila ground-like crackdown

New Delhi: Citing the police crackdown on Ramdev and his supporters at Ramlila Ground here, activist Anna Hazare today said he will approach the Supreme Court seeking its intervention to ensure that the government does "not suppress" his fast on Lokpal issue beginning August 16.

"Government said we will suppress the agitation of Anna Hazare as had been done in the case of Ramdev. Is this democracy or autocracy? You cannot suppress…. That is why we will go to the Supreme Court tomorrow," Hazare told reporters here.

Holding that the Constitution has given right to every citizen to protest democratically, the anti-corruption activist said he will launch his indefinite fast here from August 16 as announced.

"The Constitution has given right to every citizen to lodge a protest. We will launch the agitation from August 16," he said.

The exercise to work out an agreed draft of the Lokpal Bill between the Government and Hazare-led civil society had ended in failure last month after which Hazare had announced that he will go ahead with his August fast.

Hazare has been demanding that the Prime Minister be brought under the ambit of Lokpal which has been opposed by the government.

After nine meetings spread over two months, the joint drafting committee of the two sides concluded its deliberations on a note of disagreement with the government asserting that it could not allow creation of a parallel structure which would be "answerable to nobody".

An all-party meet on Lokpal earlier this month had agreed that a "strong and effective" bill should be brought in the Monsoon Session of Parliament with consensus that supremacy of Parliament and established procedures be maintained.

Police had carried out a crackdown on Ramdev and his supporters, who were agitating against corruption and blackmoney, at Ramlila ground on June 4 night, lobbing tear gas shells. Ramdev was bundled out of Delhi.