If Mumbai joined the groundswell of support for Anna Hazare this April, his renewed call for an indefinite hunger strike from August 16 is drawing even larger numbers to the Jan Lokpal movement.
According to the Mumbai chapter of India Against Corruption, around 30,000 people from the city and neighbouring areas are believed to have already pledged their support to Mr. Hazare.
Mayank Gandhi, the campaign's coordinator in Mumbai, told The Hindu over telephone: “We started physical registrations last Thursday. We had set a target of 50,000, but we already have about 30,000 registrations and believe they will go up.”
Campaign volunteers posed three questions to the people: Would you like to participate in the movement? Would you like to join a relay fast? Would you like to participate in the indefinite fast?
Mr. Gandhi said registrations had been pouring in through phone messages and online, data for which had not yet been counted.
In addition, the Art of Living Foundation has committed around 1,00,000 supporters and more are expected from Baba Ramdev's Bharat Swabhiman.
Campaign volunteer Rajesh Unnikrishnan, who had opted for the relay fast in the last round, has now decided to join the indefinite fast.
“The success of the Jan Lokpal movement depends on the people. Corruption has reached such a level that the people have to leave their jobs behind and take to the streets. Else, there would be a time when civil rights are suppressed. It's already happening with the government repression of people's movements,” he told The Hindu.
Anupam Pandya, a former Air India employee who took on the airline's management over the issue of non-licensed staff and faced harassment, said he would be going on an indefinite hunger strike along with his wife.
Fighting his legal case, he realised there was “no law that could touch” the powerful. “If I fight corruption now at least my children will be able to lead a better life,” he said.