Today we see Anna Hazare sitting like a lighthouse on the shores of the tempestuous seas of India’s corrupt public life.
He is 73, and was not born today.
And his avatar as the conscience of the nation, as the galvanizing voice against graft did not happen in a day.
This sincere Gandhian social worker has seen with his own eyes honest, frank, truthful sons of India being murdered just because they had the courage to stand up against corruption.. And their souls speak through Anna Hazare.
Satyendra Kumar Dubey (1973-2003), a project director of the National Highways Authority of India was murdered in Gaya of Bihar state, when he was set on exposing the subcontracting of the prestigious Golden Quadrilateral road project by LT to low technology groups and petty contractors controlled by local mafia.
The 31-year old IIT civil engineer (M.Tech) had written directly to the then PM, Atal Bihari Vajpayee about the corruption in the project and had asked for his name to be kept secret.
But somewhere along the line his name was leaked out to the mafia groups and they got him shot when he was returning home in Gaya in a rickshaw after attending a marriage in Kashi.
The stolen cell phone of Satyendra was recovered from the rickshaw puller when he made a call to his second wife after keeping the phone switched off for a fortnight. Despite a CBI probe, Satyendra’s murder has been made to look like a robbery bid gone wrong.
Indian oil corporation marketing manager Shanmugham Manjunath was gunned down when he raided a petrol pump selling adulterated fuel in Lakhimpur Kheri district of Uttar Pradesh on November 19, 2005.
A management graduate, Manjunath who was from the Kolar district of Karnataka had laid down his life for probity.
RTI activists who expose corrupt officials and businessmen have been running targets for criminals. Satish Shetty was killed in January 2010 by sword-toting masked men because he had exposed corrupt land transactions near Pune. He had gone for his morning walk..
Satish Shetty was a lieutenant of Anna Hazare in his movement against corruption.
Satyendra, Manjunanth and Satish…did not die in vain. Their sacrifice made their friends stand up for them. Now the blood of these true sons of Mother Bharat is energizing the nation. They live in our hearts….Their names will be emblazoned in gold in the new flag of a new India free of corruption.