Indians in Tokyo pledge support to Anna

August 26th, 2011 - 4:32 pm ICT by IANS  

Anna Hazare Mumbai, Aug 26 (IANS) Anna Hazare’s crusade for a strong Lokpal Bill has evoked tremendous support among Indians living and working in Tokyo, Japan. Besides a signature campaign, a series of programmes have been organised to extend support to the veteran activist.

“We have carried out symbolic protests in prominent places of Tokyo besides a signature campaign in which over 600 people took part,” Swapnali Puradkar, one of the organisers, told IANS in an e-mail.

Given the strict rules in Japan, people cannot take out a rally but were permitted small gatherings to voice their protests against corruption and their commitment to Hazare’s cause, Swapnali, who is originally from Maharashtra, said.

“We also undertook a symbolic visit to Renkoji Shrine, a purported place of Subhash Chandra Bose’s ashes. This visit was meant to exhibit solidarity with the idea of India and national pride as aspired by the likes of Bose,” she added.

These programmes are being organised ever since Hazare began his fast Aug 16.

In some programmes, the organisers explained the background, importance and relevance of Hazare’s campaign to the Indian community.

“At these interactive sessions, different ideas were put forth for avoiding corruption at a personal level. Ways and means to motivate and involve family and friends back home were also discussed,” said Anand Shiralkar, a participant.

The signature campaign culminated in a memorandum submitted to the Indian Embassy in Tokyo, he said.

“It is a reflection of the collective disappointment towards the current government in tackling corruption related issues and its impact on the image of India abroad. The ambassador was requested to convey the message that Indians in Tokyo are concerned about the events back home and are very much in favour of implementing a stricter law to curb corruption,” Shiralkar said.

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