Hazare to continue fast at Ramlila Ground from today

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on November 12, 2017

Preparation in full swing at the Ramlila Maidan, the proposed site for Anna Hazare’s fast, in the Capital on Thursday. — Ramesh Sharma

Team Anna agrees to abide by existing rules

As support for social activist Anna Hazare continued to pour in, there were signs of thaw in the stand-off between him and the Government. Mr Hazare agreed to continue his fast in Ramlila Ground from August 19, with some conditions, including restricting the protest to 15 days.

The veteran social activist has been on fast in Tihar Jail since August 16, when he was arrested, sparking countrywide protests.

However, Ms Kiran Bedi, a member of Team Anna, clarified that the fast would last only till the 74-year-old Gandhian's health permitted. Mr Hazare is said to be under the supervision of cardiologist Dr Naresh Trehan.

In another sign of softening, Mr Arvind Kejriwal of India Against Corruption (IAC), hinted that the team was open to not insisting on including the higher judiciary in the Lokpal Bill, if the Government brings a “good” Judicial Accountability Bill. He, however, was firm on bringing the PM under its ambit.

Sources said the breakthrough came after discussions between Ms Bedi, senior lawyer Mr Prashant Bhushan and the Delhi Police Commissioner, Mr B.K. Gupta.

Later, the Union Home Secretary, Mr R.K. Singh, confirmed that permission for the fast was conditional and up to September 2.

Sources said Team Anna gave a two-page undertaking to the police agreeing to abide by existing rules and regulations such as the crowd would not exceed the capacity of the ground, which can accommodate around 25,000 people.

The undertaking, signed by Mr Hazare, Mr Kejriwal, Mr Prashant Bhushan, Ms Bedi and Mr Shanti Bhushan, said that if any clause was violated, they would be liable to be prosecuted under law.

Published on August 18, 2011

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