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Staff Reporter, The Hindu / MUMBAI, August 19, 2011.
A child joins dabbawallahs as they shout slogans while walking past Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus during a rally in support of anti-corruption activist Anna Hazare in Mumbai, on Friday - AP.
Breaking a 120-year-old-tradition of never going on a strike, around 1,200 dabbawallas struck work for the first time and marched from Churchgate station in Mumbai to the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus of Mumbai in a grand show of solidarity with the Jan Lokpal cause.
“We are from the Warkari community [Vaishnava religious movement]. This is ishwar seva [service to god]. We don't want anything. We get paid for the work we do. We have no allegiance with any political party. There was no selfish aim to our act. We always do team work. Here Anna Hazare is staking his life for others, for the poor. We therefore did it to support him,” Raghunath Medge, director of the Mumbai Dabbawalla Sanghatana, told The Hindu over telephone.
The dabbawallas chose Friday so that their customers would be least inconvenienced.