CHICAGO: Swaraj Abhiyan, an organization with a mission to educate and mobilize Indian citizens to ensure accountability of political leaders and reduce corruption in public life attracts a good number of supporters and fans here too.
This was evident when a group of supporters hosted an interactive talk with eminent lawyers and activists Shanti Bhushan and Prashant Bhushan on June 1 at Meadows Club in Rolling Meadows, northwest side suburb of Chicago.
The Bhushans’ live talks were well attended despite it being a working day. Shanti Bhushan spoke about his vision of clean politics in India where parties and political leaders did not run after power and rather power ran after them because they were invested in solving the problems facing the common man and saw their term in office as a responsibility entrusted to them.
Prashant Bhushan talked about in great detail about the start of IAC movement which galvanized the nation and created hope for clean politics, and how it translated into a political party and how step by step the party started compromising on its core values of zero tolerance for corruption, transparency, accountability and decentralization or Swaraj to finally become like any other political party.
He mentioned how Swaraj Abhiyan was launched so that all the selfless energy of people who had wanted to see India change was not wasted and could be kept focused on India’s development.
He pointed out that Swaraj Abhiyan is focusing on four key problems facing the nation today – the plight of farmers and agriculture; problems in education; communal strife and continuing corruption.
The BJP government is not serious about curbing corruption either as they had been systematically dismantling all anti-corruption institutions, he observed.
Bhushan shared that Swaraj Abhiyan’s Jai Kisan program has been fighting for the rights of farmers and the relief for people in drought hit areas in India in over 12 States. Swaraj Abhiyan’s recent PIL in Supreme Court fought by him was awarded a historic judgment where the Supreme Court has ordered the Central government to provide relief to the people in 12 drought hit States that it was obligated to do but had not done.
Swaraj Abhiyan Anti-Corruption Team has launched a nationwide citizens’ whistleblowers forum and recently exposed the scam in the Augusta Westland helicopter deal involving crores of public money.
He lauded NRIs for making significant contributors in the anti-corruption drive and urged them to continue to support the fight for clean politics keeping the elected representatives accountable to work in public interest.