“Ours is a non-violent Naxalite party wedded to ushering in a society that does not discriminate anybody on the basis of religion or caste, region or language or economic status”, declared Lok Satta Party President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan here today.
Releasing the party’s second list of 20 candidates contesting the ensuing elections to the Legislative Assembly, Dr. JP disclosed that Mr. Sudhakar Babu contesting from Rampachodavaram in East Godavari district is former extremist who had wielded arms earlier. He had joined the Lok Satta Party and come forward to contest believing in the party philosophy that a ballot is much more lethal than a bullet in changing the course of politics and history.
Pointing out that 13 of the 20 candidates named today belong to SC, ST, and BC communities, Dr. JP said that the Lok Satta Party is the only one that is committed to ensuring social justice. Social justice did not lie in fielding corrupt, crooked and criminal politicians or their kin belonging to weaker sections. Social justice means ensuring equal education, health care and employment opportunities and social security to all without any discrimination on grounds of religion, caste, region or language or their social and economic status. It means enabling citizens to stand on their own feet and not making them mendicants. It implies treating every one as equal before law and it warrants proportional representation to SCs, STs, minorities and women who have been denied justice for centuries.
“Ten of the 20candidates are young people, and they have not been chosen for their pedigree or family. The Lok Satta alone provides space and opportunity to young people sans political dynasties.”
Dr. JP expressed satisfaction over the representation the party has given to weaker sections on International Day for Social Justice today. “We strive to practice what we preach today, unlike other parties”, he added.
Dr. JP said there are innumerable people in society known for their integrity, competence and leadership and who detest the present day politics ridden with corruption and family rule. It is time they plunged into politics instead of sitting on the fence. Silence of good people is much more dangerous than misdeeds of bad people when the future of our children hinges on the nature of politics. Asking them to avail of the platform provided by the Lok Satta, Dr. JP said: “We don’t you ask to which caste or religion you belong so long as you have leadership qualities and integrity and are committed to changing politics.”
Dr, JP said the stakes in the coming elections are high. “The incoming Government will be spending about Rs.7 lakh crore in the next five years. If we assume that three crore voters will exercise their franchise, the Government expenditure on each voter works out to Rs.2,30,000. Should the voter then sell his precious vote for a paltry Rs.500 or Rs. 1000 or a bottle of liquor?”
In response to a question, Dr. JP said that a large number of traditional party leaders had indeed made tons of money, some shrewdly and silently and some others openly and crudely, some centralizing the operation and some others decentralizing it. “The difference between leaders of different parties is one of degree but not of kind. It is true there are leaders of impeccable integrity among all traditional parties who themselves are grieved over the present day corrupt culture.”
Dr. JP called for an effective institutional mechanism to fight corruption, since trivializing it with exchange of personal allegations would lead people nowhere. He suggested constitution of special courts to go into allegations of corruption against people in public office and confiscation of properties of the guilty; formation of transparent and accountable district governments with citizen’s charters and attendant penalties and a commitment by all political parties not to induce voters with money and liquor.
Dr. JP recalled that Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee was so distressed about the current day politicians that he wanted all of them to be defeated in the coming elections as their conduct in the House was shameful.
The coming election provides a historic opportunity to all who would like to see a new dawn in their and their children’s lives, Dr. JP added. “The election in 2009 is a fight between traditional parties and private enterprise, which treat politics as commerce and private enterprise, and the people whose future is at stake. In this struggle, the Lok Satta is fighting on behalf of the people against forces of corruption and status quoism. Now is the time for people to shed despair and come out and be counted.”
The following is the second list of candidates released by the Lok Satta Party today:
|2||K.V.Satya Prasad||Kakinada Urban||East Godavari|
|3||Sudhakara Babu||Rampa Chodavaram||East Godawari|
|6||Solkar Reddy||Rajendra Nagar||GHMC|
|7||B.Uma Maheshwar Reddy||Tenali||Guntur|
|10||Raja Ramakrishna Varma||Jaggaiahpeta||Krishna|
|15||G. Venkata Ramana Reddy||Nalgonda||Nalgonda|
|19||Jhansi Ravala||Visakha (E)||Visakhapatnam|
|20||Bhagavathi Rao Jerripothula||Visakha (S)||Visakhapatnam|