Ralegan Siddhi/Chennai: As Anna Hazare observed a day-long fast in New Delhi on Sunday, people at his native Ralegan Siddhi village too took fast, staged marches and shops there downed their shutters while his supporters in some cities also organised rallies.

Activists of "India Against Corruption" held marches in Mumbai, Ahmednagar, Chennai and Patna to express solidarity with Hazare for an effective Lokpal. They also observed a token fast.

Villagers in Ralegan Siddhi in Ahmednagar district in Maharashtra observed a day-long fast in support of the 74-year-old crusader against corruption. Shops in the village also downed their shutters.

A 'Prabhat Pheri' (morning march) was organised in the village with students also participating.

The hour-long march taken out across the village culminated at Yadavbaba temple.

A TV set was placed at this temple to help villagers follow the developments at Hazare's fast venue at Jantar Mantar in Delhi. Hundreds of IAC activists took out a vehicle rally from Shivaji Park at Dadar in Central Mumbai.

Before the start of rally, over 100 youngsters participated in a street dance, led by Khushvi Gandhi of IAC, to spread awareness about the cause among the common people.

IAC volunteer Praful Vora said as many as 300 vehicles, including motorbikes, bicycle, buses, trucks, were part of the rally.

"Citizens are together in the rally and are pressing for strong and effective Jan Lokpal Bill as demanded by Anna Hazare," he said.

The rally culminated at Azad Maidan in south Mumbai after passing through Worli, Haji-Ali, Tardeo, Opera House and Nana Chowk localities.

In Ahmednagar district, around 6,000 youths took out a motorbike rally. As a gesture to back Hazare for a strong and effective Lokpal, people from around 900 villages in the district observed fast.

A huge rally was taken out from Mahatma Gandhi statue at Wadia Park in Ahmednagar town and culminated at Bhingar, the birth place of Hazare.

The Gandhian's fast brought together slumdwellers, commercial sex workers and even physically challenged people from all strata of society.

In a throwback to previous mass agitation, corner meetings were held at 23 places in Ahmednagar town.

Shyam Asawa, trustee of Hazare's Bhrastchar Virodhi Jan Andolan, said that similar meetings, besides candle marches, will be held till December 27 to create mass awareness.

In Patna, a large number of students, advocates and traders joined IAC activists in observing the fast at the historic Gandhi Maidan, IAC state unit media in-charge
Sanjay Dutta said.

In Chennai, over 700 people observed a token fast.

"We are over 700 people here. We want a Lokpal that will clean up Indian society," Venkat Narayanan, one of the participants said.

Hazare is due to visit Chennai on December 18. He will be in Bangalore on the previous day.

Agencies