India's BJP plans four-day anti-corruption protest


India's main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) senior leader L.K. Advani gestures as he addresses media after presenting a memorandum to Indian President Pratibha Patil against the Congress government's crackdown of spiritual guru Baba Ramdev's hunger strike, at President House in New Delhi on June 6, 2011. A delegation of The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) met President Pratibha Patil to demand convening a special session of Parliament to discuss the issue of government crackdown on Baba Ramdev's agitation. As part of its nationwide protests, top party leaders gathered again at the Rajghat on Monday morning.



Jumping onto the Baba Ramdev bandwagon with both feet, India's opposition Bharatiya Janata Party announced it would hold a four-day protest beginning June 23 against corruption and the government's failure to retrieve so-called "black money" stashed in overseas banks, the Indian Express reports.

“Our main targets will be Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and the Congress party,” the paper quoted BJP general secretary Ananth Kumar as saying.

Senior party leaders and chief ministers of BJP-ruled state will address rallies at state and divisional headquarters during the protest, the paper said.

While the anti-corruption movement has attracted mass support, it remains to be seen whether the BJP or any other political party will be able to capitalize on the public dissatisfaction to bring down Manmohan Singh's United Progressive Alliance government with a no confidence vote. Singh's allies have little to gain from jumping ship, and, cynics say, three more years is a long time for them to keep earning.

That said, unless Singh's Congress can stop the bleeding, the once unassailable Singh-Sonia Gandhi-Rahul Gandhi triumvirate will be on the outside looking in after the next election -- set for 2014.