Hyderabad: Hundreds of citizens and youth, among them former chief election commissioner JM Lyngdoh, joined hands to march against corruption here Sunday as part of a nationwide anti-graft campaign by civil society groups.
The participants marched along Necklace Road on the banks of Hussain Sagar Lake in the heart of Hyderabad. Led by Lyngdoh, activists of Youth for Better India carried banners and placards with anti-corruption slogans like "Bring the Lokpal Bill".
Bureaucrat-turned-politician Jayaprakash Narayan, physician KS Ratnakar and Telugu film director Raja Mouli were among the key participants in the rally, which coincided with Martyrs` Day, the death anniversary of the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi.
"India stands against corruption," was written on the T-shirts worn by the participants. "It is your money," said another slogan on a banner.
The two-kilometre march was organised in support of the Lokpal Bill drafted by many civil society organisations to replace the existing, mutually exclusive anti-corruption agencies with a single, autonomous apex body empowered to investigate and prosecute politicians, bureaucrats and judges.
The participants included followers of yoga guru Baba Ramdev and activists of several NGOs. Students of various colleges were seen holding national flags and the colourful flags of their respective organisations and institutions.
The organisers said the Lokpal Bill drafted by civil society organisations and not the one drafted by the government should be enacted.
"Ministers should be brought under the purview of Lokpal. The institution of Lokpal should have all the powers to prosecute and punish all those involved in corruption including ministers," said Raja Mouli.
Srinivasa Rao of Lok Satta said the recent instances of large-scale corruption like 2G spectrum and huge sums of black money stashed in foreign banks have added to the public anger.
"This fight against corruption should go on. Every citizen should talk about it as awareness is the only way through which we can fight this menace which is eating into the vitals of society," he said.
The participants later attended a public meeting on the banks of the lake that was addressed by Lyngdoh and other eminent personalities from various walks of life.