Union Minister offers to quit in support of Hazare

The Hindu, April 09, 2011

Says will do anything for war against corruption

With public support for the anti-corruption movement swelling, Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Dinesh Trivedi has offered to resign from the Union Council of Ministers.

The offer comes just as West Bengal readies itself for Assembly elections where the Trinamool Congress is expected to occupy a crucial political space.

In a letter to civil rights activist Anna Hazare, Mr. Trivedi said he is ready to do anything to strengthen Mr. Hazare’s fight against corruption. Mr. Trivedi, Member of Parliament from Barrackpore and senior leader of the Trinmool Congress, has been associated with Anna Hazare and Arvind Kejriwal for many years. He is campaigning for his party in the interiors of West Bengal.

Mr. Trivedi had fought a significant legal battle when the Vohra Committee report that came up with evidence of a nexus between the underworld and politicians and bureaucrats was submitted to the government. He along with others filed a writ petition in the Supreme Court in 1997. Although it was disposed of, the Court made many important observations before doing so, including creating the institution of Lokpal, Mr. Trivedi told The Hindu.

In view of Mr. Hazare’s fast and people’s response to it, it was wonderful to read what the judges said then. Moreover, in view of the suspicion that those involved may well be individuals who occupied, or had occupied, high positions in government, it was necessary that the body be able to obtain the sanctions that were necessarily required before any prosecution was launched, he said.

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