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zeenews.india.com / Last Updated: Thursday, August 18, 2011, 10:15.
New Delhi: In a late night breakthrough in the deadlock between Anna Hazare and Delhi Police over the duration of his anti-corruption protest, the Gandhian accepted the offer for 14 days of hunger strike beginning on Thursday at the Ramlila Maidan.
Confirming the development, key Team Anna member Arvind Kejariwal said, “Anna Hazare has accepted the offer made before him by Delhi Police to go on fast for 15 days without any pre-conditions. We have been assured of full co-operation by the authorities. The senior officials of Delhi Police have assured as an extension of another 15 days Delhi if required.”
Giving details about Anna Hazare’s health, Kejariwal told reporters outside Tihar, “Anna ji is fine. He is in a good health. He has been examined by a team of doctors from the jail and they certified that he is in a good shape.”
However, he added, “Anna will undergo a medical test in Tihar jail today before he sets out for Ramlila Maidan where he will launch his protest for a strong Lokpal. The anti-corruption crusader will be examined by doctors from the jail, doctors from a government hospital and those from Naresh Trehan's Vedanta Medicity.”
When asked as to when Anna Hazare will set out for Ramlila Maidan, Kejariwal said, “As of now it is difficult for us to tell when will Anna reach the Ramlila Ground. I have been told that MCD officials are preparing the ground for Anna’s proposed agitation and senior officials are supervising the work. Ramlila Ground is not in position to accommodate a large number of his supporters at the moment.”
Earlier, Hazare's aide Kiran Bedi also tweeted, “Anna has accepted the DP (Delhi Police) permission for two weeks (of fast). Anna now shall be at the Ramlila Ground post 3 PM."
The breakthrough came after a nearly 30-minute meeting Hazare aides Bedi, Prashant Bhushan, Manish Sisodia and Arvind Kejriwal had with Delhi Police Commissioner BK Gupta at the latter's residence in Chanakyapuri shortly after midnight.
Bedi said the Police Commissioner offered permission for 14 days of protest by 74-year-old Hazare at the Ramlila Ground, after which she, along with Bhushan, Sisodia and Kejriwal went back to the Tihar Jail, where the social activist has been staying put ever since her arrest and release on Tuesday, to apprise him of the offer.
Later, Bedi said on the micro-blogging site that Delhi Police "removed the unacceptable conditions and offered 15 days permission. Anna accepted there".
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