Ramdev ends fast, vows to fight corruption


7 Apr 2011
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Yoga guru Baba Ramdev on Sunday finally ended his nine-day fast against corruption and vowed to pursue his campaign. But the Congress still denounced him as a "fake baba".

Within hours of Ramdev sipping fruit juice at a hospital here on the frantic appeals of spiritual leaders like Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Congress general secretary BK Hariprasad dubbed him a fraud.

"He is a 'dhongi (fake) baba'. He should tell people from where he got his Rs.1,100 crore," Hariprasad said in Bangalore, referring to the financial empires Ramdev reportedly presides over.

Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, the Art of Living founder who had been talking to Ramdev for some days, was among those who played a key role in persuading the Haridwar-based yoga guru to give up his fast.

"Baba Ramdev has ended his fast. He has taken (fruit) juice," he said after meeting him for a third time. He said the hunger strike ended in the presence of religious and spiritual leaders.

The 46-year-old Ramdev's trusted aide, Acharaya Balakrishna, said that though he was ending his fast the yoga guru would continue with his drive against mounting corruption and black money.

"I take this resolution to lead this 'satyagraha' till the last breath of my life," Balakrishna quoted Ramdev as saying.

Digvijay Singh, the most vocal critic of Ramdev in the Congress, went on the offensive yet again, demanding a probe into alleged money laundering by his trust.

In signs that the government was beginning to get tired of the anti-corruption crusaders, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee alleged in Kolkata that civil society activists were undermining democratic institutions.

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