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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

ANTI-CORRUPTION MOVEMENT - From Ground Zero Day 2: 'Are you with Anna or not?

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From Ground Zero Day 2: `Are you with Anna or not?

Biplob Ghosal/Kamna Arora

A day after the arrest and subsequent 'release' of Anna Hazare, the overwhelming support extended by the hoi polloi to India’s biggest anti-corruption icon is in fact swelling by the minute.

Thousands of protesters, who started the march from India Gate to support Anna Hazare, have now reached the Parliament Street near Jantar Mantar, where Prashant Bhushan and Medha Patkar and Swami Agnivesh addressed the crowd. Bhushan said that "Annaji is continuing his fast inside Tihar and he has urged the protesters to protest peacefully.

Patkar energised the crowd with halla bol slogans as the people have been stopped to move to Parliament.

Chanting slogans at the top of their voices, the crowd’s vigour is unprecedented. Hours after PM Manmohan Singh defended the Delhi Police action against team Anna, the crowd seems to be in no mood to stop the protest. The credibility of the government seems to be in serious doubt since the people have started chanting slogans that have changed from pro-Anna to anti-govt in nature.

Earlier, protesting since Tuesday’s night outside Tihar Jail, 65-year-old Anil Kumar was not willing to leave. “I will continue to be here until Annaji is released and all the conditions are met. I request police to arrest me so that I can join him in jail.”

Notably, the India's well-acclaimed social activist decided to remain inside the premises of Tihar Jail despite being released on Tuesday night, demanding an unconditional release and permission to launch his fast at Jai Prakash Narain Park in Central Delhi. As Anna continued his fast-unto-death inside the jail, his supporters thronged outside. From as young as five to as old as 80, the zeal and fervor of Anna’s supporters are remarkable.

Moved by the Anna Hazare's fast and enthusiasm of his supporters, people residing in the neighbourhood of Tihar jail could be seen arranging breakfast and tea for those who stayed outside the jail overnight.

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