Arvind Kejriwal

From shaking up the very foundations of the Indian government to stirring up unseemly controversies, from showing incredible courage in the face of extreme adversities to losing a reputation built over years of hard work in just a blink of an eye, from setting the electoral hustings afire with golden speeches to getting into trouble for not speaking at all, there were many 'newsmakers' in 2012 who caught the common man's imagination. Some made it for stellar reasons, others for all there is wrong with the society. Here are 12 'newsmakers' that deserve a mention.

From a three-storeyed office in Ghaziabad, social activist-turned-politician Arvind Kejriwal has managed to bring to light the many indiscretions of some famous names in India. His claims and allegations are aired continuously by 24/7 television news channels: you may call him a crusader or an opportunist, but Arvind Kejriwal has successfully tapped into the popular outrage over the deep-rooted corruption in the country to propel himself into the foreground.

The chief designer of the India Against Corruption movement, Kejriwal has launched a series of accusations of corruption involving some of India's most powerful people, rocking the political establishment. Kejriwal has publicly levelled charges of shady dealings against Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law Robert Vadra, Bharatiya Janata Party president Nitin Gadkari, the then law minister and the current External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid, and Reliance Industries Ltd chairman Mukesh Ambani to ruffle many a feather in an establishment that is charged with thriving on crony capitalism.

But what makes Kejriwal a force to reckon with is the support of millions of middle-class Indians fed up with corruption that plagues the system. Though his critics dismiss him as a political opportunist for his 'hit-and-run' tactics, they admit that his claims have managed to shake up the system.

After a disclosure, Kejriwal said, "Without jumping into the system, it will be impossible to clean up the system. We are going to challenge this political system on a daily basis." It is to be seen whether his claims will result in cleaning up the system. But one thing is for sure: this former bureaucrat has shaken up a system that was in deep slumber for a long time.

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