Indian Activist’s Hunger Strike Enters 2nd Day

Posted August 20th, 2011 at 4:00 am (UTC-5)
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Hundreds of people spent the night in a show of solidarity at the public venue in New Delhi where Indian anti-graft crusader Anna Hazare is on hunger strike.

Saturday marks the second day of Hazare's 15-day public fast aimed at forcing officials to adopt tougher anti-corruption legislation.

The 74-year-old activist addressed several thousand people Friday at the start of the strike.

In Mumbai Friday, some 5,000 men who distribute lunch boxes went on strike for the first time in more than a century to show solidarity with Hazare's campaign.

Earlier this month, the prime minister's ruling Congress party introduced an anti-corruption bill in parliament that would create a civil organization , with the powers to investigate ministers and bureaucrats. But Hazare rejected the bill and called for parliament to pass his own version, saying it would do more to hold the prime minister and judicial branch accountable.

Analysts say the Hazare has tapped into widespread public anger over what is seen as a pervasive culture of official corruption.