Although the deteriorating health of Anna Hazare had his supporters at Ramlila Ground here concerned on Tuesday, a majority of them felt that he was left with no other option but to continue his indefinite fast to force the Government to bring in a strong Lokpal Bill.

“I pray for his well-being. I have been a witness to the freedom struggle. During those days, we once got to know that Mahatma Gandhi was going to visit some place in Uttar Pradesh. However, by the time we reached there he had left. He (Anna Hazare) is following in Mahatma Gandhi's footsteps and I am here to see him in person,” said 82-year-old Raj Singh, a resident of Najafgarh.

Abdul Majid Ansari, a resident of Meerut in Uttar Pradesh, said: “He is not asking anything for himself. He is only fighting for our haq and hence I along with 39 others came here on Monday to join the movement. The Government must respond at the earliest.”

Bishambhar Dayal of Palwal in Haryana feels it is a testing time for all the supporters of Anna Hazare.

“He has been fasting for the past eight days and his health is deteriorating every minute. This might fuel more protests,” he said.

However, an optimistic Rupinder Singh said nothing would happen to Anna.

“I am not worried. I know for sure that God is with him. Those in the Government are behaving like despots. If anything happens to Anna, the people will come out on streets. They should initiate a dialogue in a transparent manner at the earliest,” he said.

Sixty-seven-year-old Raina, a resident of neighbouring Gurgaon, said the Government would have to give in to the reasonable demands. “It may take some time, but negotiations must continue to resolve the matter,” he said. Praying for Anna's health, his daughter Urvashi said the social activist finally sat on fast as a beginning had to be made somewhere.

Deteriorating health

Final year engineering students, Sayyam, Hitesh and Aditya, expressed hope that in view of Anna's deteriorating health and considering his demand for a strong Lokpal Bill, the Prime Minister would take a decision soon to break the impasse.

Prateek, a 24-year-old businessman from Gwalior, was at Ramlila Ground along with his elder sister Sonia to be part of the non-violent movement.

“It is a mass movement spread across the country. If the political leaders do not give in to the demands now, they will have to face the anger of the masses,” he said.

A young diamond merchant Puja, who stopped by to catch a glimpse of Anna while on her way home to Kolkata, shared similar sentiments.

Moulshri Saha, who had come with her son, said Anna's presence was must for the movement's success.

“I hope that the movement continues and he also remains in good health.”

For Anwar Hussain, a tailor from neighbouring Noida, Anna has emerged as an apolitical leader.

“Everyone has come together under him to fight corruption. He is showing us the right path. He should not be made to suffer any more,” said Anwar.