Jaipur, Aug 18: Support for social activist Anna Hazare’s stir for a more inclusive anti-graft law is growing across Rajasthan, with protests rallies across the state and a half-day market shutdown in the state capital.
A majority of markets in Jaipur remained closed in first half of the day in support of Hazare’s crusade against corruption.
Hundreds of people also took part in protest rallies held across the state.
Hazare’s supporters had called for a market bandh till 2 p.m. Thursday. Not only the outer areas, but the markets of the Walled City, which usually witness a heavy rush of shoppers, were completely closed.
‘I could not take part in the agitation by joining dharnas and protest rallies. By supporting the bandh call, I wanted to show my solidarity with the cause,’ Dinesh Soni, a shop keeper in Johari Bazaar area of the Walled City, told IANS.
The traders, wearing black bands, also held a sit-in in the Walled City area.
‘Jaipur has over 27,000 shops and almost all of them did not open before afternoon,’ said Girdhar Sukhija, another shopkeeper.
The city’s youth remained front-runners by taking part in the agitation with a difference. A group of girls with tricolours in their hands, one of them sitting on a horse, made round of the entire city shouting slogans in support of Hazare.
‘We are students and want to draw attention of people towards this issue so we took this exercise,’ said one of the girls.
Youth were seen taking out vehicle rallies on the deserted roads near the secretariat building.
‘We have skipped classes to be part of this historic agitation. It is a to fight for a cause,’ said Abhishek Kumar, a Bachelor of Arts student who along with his 50 friends took out a vehicle rally on Sahkar Marg.
A representative of voluntary organisation, Jago Janta Society, said: ’25 supporters are organizing fast every day and it will continue till the government meets Hazare’s demands.’
Sit-ins were also organised in various parts of the city including Ambedkar Circle, Raja Park, Albert Hall and Badi Choupar.
Reports of rallies and sit-ins in support of Hazare were received from Udaipur, Jodhpur, Bharatpur and Kota.