Rajghat is used to visitors, but on Wednesday, Gandhi’s samadhi offered a very different kind of outing for Delhiites enjoying summer vacation. The day-long fast site of Anna Hazare, a Gandhian, saw students, teachers and children appearing in hordes from various parts of Delhi.
Many were second-timers to the Hazare brand of demonstration against corruption, having been to the fast site at Jantar Mantar in April. But for a large number, this was a first.
“This is summer vacation time. We did not want to watch from the sidelines when all we see in the newspapers and on facebook are stories on Anna Hazare’s fight,” said Arushi, a first-year Commerce student from Lady Irwin College, who registered herself and her brother Bhavya, a Bluebells School student from East of Kailash, with India Against Corruption.
For many, summer vacation took away any excuse for not joining the protestors. “The schools are closed. What better opportunity to join Hazareji in this fight? I had also supported him at Jantar Mantar,” said Jyoti Bakshi, a Hindi teacher at DPS-RK Puram.
For parents, a visit to the Rajghat was apt after a round of the Bal Bhawan nearby. “I wanted to show my daughter how people are fighting against corruption,” said hardware trader from Shadara, Sanjeev Gupta, whose class-III-student daughter Kiran said she wanted to be like Kiran Bedi.
Some families said they were tourists who were dropping by after reading the papers.
Water and ice-cream sellers outside the police barricade did brisk business while vendors of chana kulcha and pakoda along Rajghat made a killing as visitors decried corruption all day.
“Our tuition teacher brought us here. We read about Jantar Mantar last time. This time we wanted to see what it was like,” said class X student Angadpal Singh who came there with his four friends from Tilak Nagar.
Along with students, DU lecturers too marked their presence. “The young and the old have joined forces in this fight,” said Ramchandra Thakram from the department History.