Wednesday, August 17, 2011

What lesson Anna Hazare could have learnt from Egypt in his fight against corruption?

Okay, so it's 17th August and Anna Hazare's much publicized fast ended even before it began. 

Thousands of people protested across the country and even courted arrest in Anna's support. But as it is evident, it didn't bring in any change in government's stance and all the protests went wasted.

One big problem with the campaign not bearing any fruit was govenment's stubbornness on the issue. But also, another major reason was lack of information among the common man.

Ask yourself - How many of you know the intricate details of the BOTH the drafts of Jan Lokpal Bill - the one prepared by Team Anna and the one by govt? What is the actual, core difference between them?

I asked myself the same question. I said the govt must also be wanting to curb corruption. I mean, of course, the issue of bringing PM and judiciary under the ambit of the bill was a topic of debate. But the govt must have not made many major changes to Team Anna's draft. That got me thinking. Anna is getting most of his demands met, then why all the fuss?

Then Team Anna held a press conference few weeks ago, and discretely spoke out the details while answering one of the question. Forget the judiciary and the PM, even the higher levels of central and state govt employees are out of the ambit of Lokpal Bill. That is not even 50% of what Team Anna is asking for; it clearly shows govt's lack of will to tackle corruption in the country.

Now when I see Anna behind bars in Tihar jail, I think of all these things and try to analyze - What went wrong with the campaign? What could have they done better? The answer comes rushing to my mind.  

I think of how the democratic revolution started in Egypt. FACEBOOK!! Wael Ghonim, a marketing manager in Google, started it all by creating a page on Facebook to make the youth of Egypt aware about the issues and the need of democracy in the country.                                              [see the main piece on Egypt here]

Did Anna Hazare do anything like that? NO. Yes, there were unofficial support groups and pages on Facebook. But nothing was directly from Team Anna. There was no significant support on Twitter either. I mean looking at the scale of the revolution against corruption in India, Anna Hazare should have been trending on Twitter practically EVERYDAY. But that didn't happen. 

Team Anna even came out with a "referendum" of sorts and declared that out of 76K they polled, 85% have rejected the govt's version of the bill's draft. I mean, SERIOUSLY!! You call the opinion of merely 65K people as PUBLIC a country of 1.3 BILLION people?? geez, you gotta be kidding me!! 

There was no real support from the people because people were confused. They were unaware of the truth.

Social Media, rather its absence, is the real reason why the campaign wasn't able to get the required public support in WHOLE of India.

Think of how much support the cause could have got had Team Anna made an official website for it and published all the details of both drafts on it. They could have even asked the questions of their "referendum" as polls. They could have got response from 76 MILLION people in India.

The reach, the possibility, the POWER of social media in unimaginable these days. Gandhiji's methods sure are good, but they alone are not sufficient in today's world. You've got to go with the times.

Team Anna did all the hard work. But they didn't do it smartly.


  1. Navin u write all these things in hurry,u shuld have done little bit more study on this,though i appreciate ur attempt.lets i start wid my view pointwise.........
    1)first line of your blog itself is is going on its not ended. so ur start itself is wrong.

    2)i am completely not agree wid u dat pepole dont knw the draft.yeah all of dem dont knw the intricate details of draft,i agree on dat.but ANNA HAZARE working for pepole on social issues from more than 20-30 years pepole have faith on him.

    3)using facebook for spreading the news is absolutely right, and for ur kind information anna team have done dat preety good.but when actual time comes at dat time sitting on facebook is not going to work,u have to come on street. u like d EGYPT revolution,its good.they spread the news through facebook, but when actual time came all came on street.tell me one thing from how long u watching videos and posts on facebook....? have u come on street to support anna , eventhough u knw the thing dat fast is going to b dere from 16...? its on mentality my dear bro...campaign is not failed, campaign is going very well,its the pepole and dere mentality....
    And talking about the official page,u think dat single person made the page and that is official.for ur information at the begaining of ur blog u posted 1 pic.."india against corruption" dats the official website and u will get all information on it realted to lokpal bill movement.u dont knw this website,it doesnt mean dat dere is not any official website.

    4)talking about referendum... kapil sibbal saying no to janlokpal bill proposed by civil socciety strongly. so that referendum was for showing mirror to him,it was taken in his constituency. that means pepole who elected u are saying dey want this bill and u opposing it.

    5)u ended ur blog again wid wrong sentence, anna team have done both hard+smart work, but pepole acted more smartly dat dey prefer to sit at home and see the thong which going on. they think that...what if v get arrested...criminal charges laga diye to kya hoga mere upar... but one thing to tell u, police arrests u ,nd leave u at another safe place away from the movement to remove crowed from actual place.

    so my dear friend u shuld have studied little bit more on dis and den u shuld have written all dis...though i appreciate ur effort.. and i think u can spread the news on facebook or any other social networking site,but for revolution to took place u have to come on street....and one thign u shuld knw..dat what government thinks.. government is thnking dat it is generation of facebook..youth talk only on facebook about dis issue..dis statements are made by senior gov. spokeperson only (i dont remeber his name right now).they think ye log sirf social networking sites pe hi bolenge and usase kuch farak nahi padega... so hame raste pe aake gov. galat soch rahi hai ye dikhana hoga.....
    .........u started wid wrong statement and u ended with wrong statement.

  2.!/janlokpal twitter link

  3. Edit ur blog and add this correct information....

    10 things to know about Anna Hazare 'n Jan Lok Pal Bill.. !

    1. Who is Anna Hazare?

    An ex-army man. Fought 1965 Indo-Pak War

    2. What's so special about him?

    He built a village Ralegaon Siddhi in Ahamad Nagar district, Maharashtra

    3. So what?

    This village is a self-sustained model village. Energy is produced in the village itself from solar power, biofuel and wind mills.

    In 1975, it used to be a poverty clad village. Now it is one of the richest village in India. It has become a model for self-sustained, eco-friendly & harmonic village.

    4. Ok,...?

    This guy, Anna Hazare was awarded Padma Bhushan and is a known figure for his social activities.

    5. Really, what is he fighting for?

    He is supporting a cause, the amendment of a law to curb corruption in India.

    6. How that can be possible?

    He is advocating for a Bil, The Jan Lokpal Bill (The Citizen Ombudsman Bill), that will form an autonomous authority who will make politicians (ministers), beurocrats (IAS/IPS) accountable for their deeds.

    8. It's an entirely new thing right..?

    In 1972, the bill was proposed by then Law minister Mr. Shanti Bhushan. Since then it has been neglected by the politicians and some are trying to change the bill to suit thier theft (corruption).

    7. Oh.. He is going on a hunger strike for that whole thing of passing a Bill ! How can that be possible in such a short span of time?

    The first thing he is asking for is: the government should come forward and announce that the bill is going to be passed.

    Next, they make a joint committee to DRAFT the JAN LOKPAL BILL. 50% goverment participation and 50% public participation. Because you cant trust the government entirely for making such a bill which does not suit them.

    8. Fine, What will happen when this bill is passed?

    A LokPal will be appointed at the centre. He will have an autonomous charge, say like the Election Commission of India. In each and every state, Lokayukta will be appointed. The job is to bring all alleged party to trial in case of corruptions within 1 year. Within 2 years, the guilty will be punished. Not like, Bofors scam or Bhopal Gas Tragedy case, that has been going for last 25 years without any result.

    9. Is he alone? Whoelse is there in the fight with Anna Hazare?

    Baba Ramdev, Ex. IPS Kiran Bedi, Social Activist Swami Agnivesh, RTI activist Arvind Kejriwal and many more.

    Prominent personalities like Aamir Khan is supporting his cause.

    10. Ok, got it. What can I do?

    At least we can spread the message. How?

    Putting status message, links, video, changing profile pics.

    At least we can support Anna Hazare and the cause for uprooting corruption from India.

    At least we can hope that his Hunger Strike does not go in vain.

    At least we can pray for his good health.

    Thanks for reading.
    by: Growing INDIA, Growing Ourselves & making INDIA a better place to live in

  4. official website which contains everything... draft details, comparison of both the drafts....