April 8, 2011

INDIA: Children, housewives, elderly join 73-year old activist Hazare's campaign

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NEW DELHI / The Indian Express / Breaking News / April 8, 2011

School children, housewives and senior citizens -- they have all poured into Jantar Mantar monument here in an expression of solidarity with Gandhian Anna Hazare.

Many have fainted, some have been hospitalised but they remain committed to the cause of removing corruption in which they find the Gandhian as the icon. (Photo: NDTV)

Take 70-year-old Omkar Nath Razdan, a retired Director General, Air Force (Works), who has spent decades with the armed forces serving across the country. He has devoted his post-retirement life to the eradication of corruption for which he has undertaken fasts at Rajghat and elsewhere before.

But he has seen nothing like the support galvanised by Hazare's fast-unto-death. He and his wife joined Hazare from day one but he fainted in the middle of the night and had to be hospitalised. He received five stitches on his head and is undergoing medical tests at Escorts Hospital.

From his bed in Escorts Hospital, Razdan describes the recent scams as "tsunami of corruption" which has engulfed India.

"Japan has witnessed a natural tsunami but we are witnessing a tsunami of corruption here," Razdan, who is presently associated with Transparency International India and Nyayabhumi, said.

Asked what motivated him to join the protest, he said he was pained to see rampant corruption in the country.

"Corruption is the root cause of Kashmir problem. It was political corruption that gave rise to Kashmir problem. Since then I am fighting political corruption. This is happening because of non-existence of Lokpal Bill," he said.

The other senior citizens who were taken to hospital included Mahant Gopal Das and O S Chauhan.

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© 2011 The Indian Express Limited.