Ramdev`s removal compared to Jallianwala

Baba Ramdev was forcibly taken away from the fast venue in the wee hours of Sunday by police.

Updated: Jun 05, 2011, 11:39 AM IST

New Delhi: Comparing the midnight police action against Baba Ramdev to the Jallianwala Bagh massacre under British rule, supporters of the yoga guru on Sunday said they will take their stir to the capital`s Jantar Mantar after being forced out of the Ramlila ground.

"This is just like what happened in the Jallianwala Bagh. At that time it was done by the British, this time it`s our own people," Hariom Sarfara, a supporter of Ramdev`s movement against black money and corruption, said.

Baba Ramdev, who had started an indefinite mass hunger strike on Saturday morning, was forcibly taken away from the venue in the wee hours of Sunday by police. It said the permit was only for a yoga camp, and not for launching protests. Supporters were lathicharged and tear gas shells were also used to disperse the crowd.

This sparked comparisons with Jallianwala where British colonial rulers had fired on a gathering of unarmed men, women and children, killing hundreds in 1919.

The Ramlila ground was cordoned off and even media was not being permitted to go inside as policemen dismantled the tent set up for the mass hunger strike.

The supporters now plan to take their agitation to Jantar Mantar in the national capital.

"We will first go to Bangla Sahab gurudwara, and then to Jantar Mantar. Our fast is still continuing and now we will launch agitation all across the country," said Suresh, from Mumbai.

Some 30 people with minor injuries were admitted to a nearby hospital, an official said.

"Tear gas shells were thrown, policemen beat us with lathis, even women and children were not spared. There were women with children and babies, what was the need for tear gas shells?," asked Sumesh Chauhan, a supporter who had come from Jammu.

"I had come with 25 people, now only two of us are left. We don`t know about the whereabouts of others," he added.

Eyewitness say supporters were forced into vans. "They packed people into ambulances and vans, many were injured. We think they were taken to hospital, but we don`t know where they have gone. Children as young as one and two were not spared and they were stuffing people into vans like straw," Kuldip Bhargaw, another supporter, said.

IANS