Anti-corruption party in full swing at Ramlila Ground
Men dressed as Ravanas with heads depicting disgraced politicians like A Raja and Suresh Kalmadi, youngsters with images of Baba Ramdev painted on their faces and groups with nagadas and dhols chanting slogans against corruption flocked Ramlila Ground on Saturday as Baba Ramdev's self-proclaimed satygraha took off on Saturday.An estimated 20,000 people sweated it out patiently at Delhi's Ramlila Ground; the sprawling maidan, which is as big as eight large-sized swimming pools put together, was filled to capacity.
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Image: Baba Ramdev supporters play drums at the Ramlila Ground
Ramdev, supporters paint the town saffron
And it came as no surprise as Baba's followers were joined by a number of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh pracharaks in their uniforms. Devotional songs reverberated across the ground during breaks between speeches. And yes, there patriotic songs were sung as well.
Image: A tired Ramdev support sleeps under a truck on Saturday
No law and order problems at Ramlila Ground
Once inside, there were boards with the names of several states displayed. People were instructed to go to the counters of their respective states and register.
Image: Sanners were placed at the ground to check bags carried by supporters
Ramdev has the crowds in splits
When people clapped before the end of his sentence, he would say, "Arrey abhi mat bajaiye taali, baat abhi baaki hain." And when they failed to applaud, he would go, "Arre, taali nahi bajaoge? Itni badi baat pe bhi?"
Yes, Ramdev's supporters got all they wanted and more.
Image: A street play being perfromed at the ground
Don't harass the press: Ramdev tells volunteers
"Arrey Rahul (name changed)," he addressed a senior journalist by name, "What happened?"When explained, Ramdev apologised. He even instructed the volunteers not to harass the press.
Image: A bicycle carrying anti-corruption messages is parked at the ground
'Gandhiji's fight was easy, but Ramdev's isn't'
Soon after Thakur completed his speech, Ramdev asked for the microphone and told his supporters that the speaker had made an 'emotional' statement and it should not be taken verbatim. "Gandhiji is and will always remain an inspiration for the masses. I visited Rajghat on Friday and prayed to him to make this andolan a success," Ramdev said.
Image: A supporter of Baba Ramdev at the ground