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Loksatta not to fight elections; to fight for people’s causes apolitically: JP

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Hyderabad: Loksatta party founder-president Dr Jayaprakash Nayan here on Tuesday took a sensational decision of staying away from electoral politics.
Announcing his decision to the media this morning, Dr Jayaprakash Narayan said the Loksatta would not fight elections hereafter and appealed to the people not to see Loksatta as a political party. However, Dr JP made it clear that though Loksatta would keep off elections indefinitely his organization would continue to fight over decentralization of power to States and local bodies and against people’s burning problems like Education and Health.
Dr Jayaprakash Narayan started Loksatta as a grassroots political movement in 1996 and made significant victories in the field of political and judicial reforms and Institution building. Some of Loksatta’s accomplishments are: Disclosure of criminal antecedents of political candidates, which finally led to the Candidate Disclosure Act in 2003. The former IAS officer successfully contested from Kukatpally Assembly constituency in 2009 general elections and proved his mettle in his new role as a political leader. Later, in the 2014 general elections, Dr Jayaprakash Narayan contested to Lok Sabha seat from Malkajgiri in Ranga Reddy district and tasted defeat at the hustings. Since then he was lying low in politics. But all of a sudden, Dr JP declared his decision that his Loksatta party would fight the elections in future.
Dr JP’s achievements were: Improvement in voter registration after years of struggle and relentless pursuit; political funding law in the wake of Tehelka scam; strengthening the anti-defection provisions; limiting the size of the Cabinet; Right to Information Act; National Health Mission; Local Courts law in 2009; Autonomy for cooperatives through the 97th Constitutional amendment; A sound Lokpal Legislation; Cancellation of 2G spectrum licenses, and competitive bidding of natural resource allocation; 99th amendment of the Constitution about NJAC (subsequently quashed by Supreme Court).
Dr JP said, “We founded Loksatta Party in 2006, as we sensed the need to create a platform for new politics, and to bring the youth, middle classes, and politically marginalized sections into the mainstream. Only when these classes yearn for new politics will change be accelerated. Once these disenfranchised classes become vocal and play a creative role, established parties will be forced to change their ways and improve our democracy. In most societies that is how change happens. But if these parties fail to respond to people’s urges, they will be eventually marginalized, and new political forces will replace them. While we are away from elections, we will still continue to work for political transformation and build people movements to strengthen our democracy”, Dr Jayaprakash Narayan said.
Loksatta party will continue to operate as a non-electoral movement for the time-being. Loksatta 2.0 is re-aligning to bring about the desired outcomes at a faster pace. Some of Loksatta’s immediate priorities are: Strengthening and restructuring federalism to enable states to deliver; Universal Healthcare and Quality Education and Accountability to tax payers at local level.
“We welcome all like-minded organizations, political parties and individuals to join hands as we take on this exciting journey to transform India”. Dr JP said.
Surendra Srivastava, National President, said, “today’s announcement should be seen as ‘Loksatta going back to its roots — Loksatta is perhaps the only organization in the country that had phenomenal impact in political, administrative and judicial world. We always believed political power is the means and not the end in itself. We will leverage our strengths and work hard to bring systemic changes that will have a lasting impact in the journey of our nation”.
V Satyanarayana of Kukatpally handed over a cheque of Rs 10,000 to Dr JP in support of Loksatta 2.0. N Srinivas, Lok Satta Telangana Convenor and Hyma, LSP general secretary was also present. (NSS)

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