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Indian yoga guru begins mass fast to death

Saturday, June 04, 2011 - 02:07

June 4 - Supporters including a leader of a right-wing Hindu party flock to Delhi to support Indian anti-graft yoga guru Baba Ramdev on his fast-unto-death protest. Sunita Rappai reports

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Indian yoga guru Baba Ramdev meets supporters in his tent in New Delhi. The hugely popular and very wealthy Swami says hes fasting to death in demand of reforms, including the death penalty for corrupt officials, in an anti-graft campaign that has touched a chord with millions of Indians. Thousands flock to the gurus's tent from all over the country in support of his hungerstrike. (SOUNDBITE) (Hindi) TULA RAO, A SUPPORTER FROM MAHARASHTRA, SAYING: "We came to Delhi because we want discipline. Baba Ramdev said he will bring back the black money. We want to end corruption because it affects the poor as none of their work is done without bribery." Critics however say the guru's protest is politically-motivated - accusing him of having links to a radical Hindu nationalist group. Sadhvi Ritambhara, who heads the right-wing Vishwa Hindu Parishad party has joined Baba Ramdev and spoke to supporters from the stage. SOUNDBITE) (Hindi) SADHVI RITHAMBARA, LEADER OF HINDU RIGHT-WING OUTFIT VISHWA HINDU PARISHAD, SAYING: "For 65 years, we have been moving towards self-destruction. By losing our own identity and emulating other countries has been a matter of pride for us. We have been blind to our own culture, and it is a matter of shame. Its consequences are in front of us." Baba Ramdev's campaign is the latest embarrassment for a Congress party-led coalition hit by a string of corruption scandals. Sunita Rappai, Reuters

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Indian yoga guru begins mass fast to death

Saturday, June 04, 2011 - 02:07