Social Activist Anna Hazare Ends Hunger Strike After 6 Days

| March 29 , 2018 , 18:12 IST

Social activist Anna Hazare who launched another hunger strike in the national capital Delhi on March 23 officially called off the strike 6 days later on Thursday after talks with Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis and Union Minister of State for Agriculture Gajendra Singh Shekhawat.

The latest indefinite hunger strike came years after the previous one in 2011 which Anna Hazare had launched against corruption and ended 98 hours later. While the previous hunger strike took place in Delhi's Jantar Mantar, the 2018 hunger strike was launched at the Ramlila Maidan of Delhi. In comparison, the protests of 2018 did not have as much participation or prominence as compared to the 2011 protests that saw large masses of people coming out to join Hazare.

Hazare launched the indefinite hunger strike on March 23 demanding a competent Lokpal to investigate corruption cases and better production costs for farm produce. The Delhi police had granted permission for 80-year-old Hazare's protest on March 22.

According to an aide of Hazare, the date of launching the strike, March 23 was chosen specifically as it was 'Shaheed Diwas' which honours the death of freedom fighters Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev on this date.

Hazare is demanding the setting up of the Lokpal at the Centre and Lokayuktas in the states to combat corruption, and the implementation of the Swaminathan Commission report, to address the concerns of farmers.

While the 2011 anti-corruption movement took place against the Congress-led UPA government, this time the protest was launched against the BJP-led NDA government which Hazare has accused of not appointing a Lokpal to investigate corruption, despite there being a law in place.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had also participated in the 2011 anti-corruption movement, and subsequently formed the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in November 2012. When announcing the new rally, Hazare had expressed his hope that no new 'Kejriwals' come from this movement.