Ramdev betrayed govt: Azad
During an interaction with women journalists at the Indian Women`s Press Corps here, he also put the onus of "timing" of the midnight crackdown on Ramdev`s supporters at Ramlila ground on law enforcement authorities.
"On his (Ramdev`s) part there was a betrayal," the Health Minister and senior Congress leader said, when asked if the government has made an error of judgement by releasing the agreement letter given on behalf of Ramdev, which prompted him to level allegations of cheating against senior ministers.
Azad said Ramdev had agreed to announce the time of ending his fast against black money and government had informed him of a deadline which was extended several times but he did not keep his promise.
He said the BJP, which is holding a protest in Rajghat against the police action, is trying to "fish in troubled waters". Azad also said whatever the RSS and BJP are doing is aimed at diverting attention from issues like Malegaon and Hyderabad which has created an "anti-RSS mood" in the country.
"They (BJP) have no sympathy for Ramdev. They are dancing at Rajghat… I don`t know whether it is for celebration or mourning or they dancing for Ramdevji`s arrest. Their heart is not there…they are just doing politics," he said.
To a question on the midnight crackdown, he said negotiation and eviction are separate issues and the latter is related to law enforcing agencies.
"The organisers sought permission for yoga camp for 5,000 people. The numbers swelled to 30,000 and call was being given for more to assemble. If they do not stick to the purpose or number for which permission has been given, it is violation of the basic agreement and it becomes unmanageable," Azad said.
He said the police acted in their wisdom keeping law and order issues in mind. "They had to do it," he said.
"As regards what should have been the timing, that is for the law enforcement agencies. I am not saying that they did right or they did wrong. The Prime Minister or ministers do not decide the logistics or time and that clarification has been given by police," the minister said and added that the party has also nothing to with when or how it was done.
On women and children becoming victims of police action, he said, "Everyone has sympathies with women and children. Law enforcement agencies has their own rules and they do see all these things. The clarification has been given by police."
Azad said there can be "no party more democratic" than Congress. "We have to fight corruption. A committee (on Lokpal) has been functioning and work was on. But everybody is jumping into the bandwagon. Notwithstanding that, the Prime Minister and Finance Minister wrote to Ramdev."
He said agreement was reached with Ramdev on 90 per cent issues. "Nobody can hope for 100 per cent…there are legal and other implications relating to some demands. We had felt, if required, we can meet again to sort out remaining issues."
To a query on US food and drug agency raising questions on some medicines of Ramdev, he said it is an important issue but should be looked into later "or we may be accused of targeting" him. Pressed further if he got such complaints, he said, "I do not want to make another issue."