Yoga icon Baba Ramdev left Delhi very much on his own terms this afternoon after keeping the police waiting overnight, winning the endorsement of all political parties except the Congress, and serving notice to the Prime Minister and his party about his plans to ensure they lose the next election.
- The people are the real strength of a revolution.
- This Central government has lost the confidence of the people
- Mulayam Singh, Mayawati, NCP have supported my campaign against black money. Take these parties out and the government will collapse.
- If there would have been a vote on black money yesterday in parliament, this govt would have to go yesterday itself
- Mr Prime Minister, tomorrow is Independence Day. If you don't speak on black money and corruption, then you are as guilty as those who are corrupt.
- We are leaving not because we have lost, but because we have won
- We are not beggars, we are asking for the rights of our country. And if we don't get it, we will fight for it
- We haven't asked for a separate country, we haven't even asked for a village like the Pandavas. We have just asked for our rights
- If we'd wanted we could have stopped the Prime Minister from hoisting the flag on Independence Day.
- The Congress has written its name on the top of the list of corrupt
- Take an oath from here and go that no member of this corrupt party should be in the government. "Congress hatao, desh bachao."
- Home Ministers are very nice but the 'maalkin' sitting above them, she keeps making them say something or the other.
- We will vacate the stadium, leave for Haridwar and take a dip in the Ganga
- We will keep fighting. I thank all our supporters and workers present here
- Swami Ramdev is my partner in searching for people involved in black money and corruption
- He is working for the people of this country
- I have forgotten my surya namaskar these days, this is my surya namaskar now
- I want that surya which shines light on the dark areas of this country and helps remove poverty and corruption
1. Baba Ramdev has reportedly promised the Delhi Police that he will leave the Ambedkar stadium and head to Haridwar soon after he ends his six-day fast this morning. The yoga guru and about 5000 supporters defied a police request and spent the night at the stadium.
2. There were reports earlier that the Baba might refuse to budge yet as he wanted to hoist the national flag at the Ambedkar stadium tomorrow.
3. The government, sources say, has decided to just not get provoked by Baba Ramdev's moves, including the refusal so far to leave the Ambedkar stadium. They have been counting on his supporters getting tired and on the fact that access to food, water and toilets is a problem at the stadium.
4. The Delhi Police is treading cautiously. It has instructions not to let a repeat of the midnight swoop fiasco of June last year or even the botched-up Anna Hazare arrest episode of August 2011 happen.
5. The Delhi administration is nervous because the Ambedkar stadium in Central Delhi is in a high security zone of the capital and with Independence Day less than 24 hours away, the safety of the thousands of supporters who have assembled in support of Baba Ramdev has become a big concern.
6. While Baba Ramdev campaigns against black money, income tax officials are scrutinizing the financial details of the Patanjali Yoga Trust and Divya Yog Mandir Trust he runs, for alleged tax evasion.
7. Politicians came out in support of Baba Ramdev yesterday, isolating the Congress. At his camp in the morning, BJP president Nitin Gadkari and Sharad Yadav provided a VIP touch. Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar also lent his considerable credibility to the Baba's cause. Mulayam Singh Yadav and Mayawati, leaders of the two major parties in Uttar Pradesh, both said the issue of black money is worth attention and scrutiny.
8. Along with the major political leaders, Arvind Kejriwal of the recently disbanded Team Anna also showed his support. He tweeted, "We support Swami Ramdev's agitation and issues raised by him. Urge people to support his cause.They r neck deep in corruption n their support is mere opportunism (sic)."
9. Yesterday, Baba Ramdev and thousands of his supporters were detained when they tried to march to Parliament. They were brought to Ambedkar stadium; they were released by the Delhi Police at 7.50 pm, but they refused to leave stadium. "Will we go?" asked Baba Ramdev. "No," they shouted back. Baba Ramdev demanded that the government must provide food and water to everyone inside the stadium as it was a "temporary jail".
10. Last year, Baba Ramdev's camp at Ramlila Maidan was packed to capacity, when the police charged in at midnight to force the camp to disband. Many people were injured. The Supreme Court blamed both the Delhi Police and the charismatic guru for risking the safety of thousands.
Sources say the yoga guru wants to keep up pressure on the government and that the next big movement will be announced before next year's Lok Sabha elections. Meanwhile, the BJP is likely to raise the issue of black money in Parliament today.
At a stadium in central Delhi near Ferozeshah Kotla, Baba Ramdev and thousands of his supporters are refusing to return home. They were arrested and taken there earlier today while protesting against black money and corruption.
Police sources to NDTV: Baba Ramdev and 5000 supporters to spend the night in Ambedkar Stadium. They will not be asked to move before morning.
Baba Ramdev says 'No question of vacating stadium tonight. We will reveal our strategy tomorrow.'
The story so far...
1. Baba Ramdev who was released by the Delhi Police at 7:50 this evening, refused to leave Ambedkar Stadium, which had been turned into a holding pen of sorts for the yoga guru and his supporters. At 7.30 pm, there were over 8000 people there. The police told them they were all free to leave. "Will we go?" asked Baba Ramdev. "No,"they shouted back. Baba Ramdev demanded that the government must provide food and water to everyone inside the stadium as it was a 'temporary jail'.
2. Baba Ramdev was arrested at around 2 pm while marching to Parliament. He , and 300 of his supporters, were stopped at the Ranjit Singh flyover, half a kilometre from Ramlila Maidan, where the yoga guru had been on a hunger strike for five days.
3. "Congress hatao, desh bachao (remove the Congress Party and save the nation)," he said at the start of his "protest" walk in the afternoon with thousands of supporters as opposition political leadership rushed to be seen near him. "There is a Gangotri (fount) of corruption flowing through that one party," he said on top of his bus to NDTV. "We will make sure they lose."
4. Political support was offered at his camp this morning by BJP president Nitin Gadkari, and Sharad Yadav of the JD(U). Both pledged their parties' support to the yoga icon. The BJP also protested against black money in Parliament today, resulting in the adjournment of the Lok Sabha.
5. The Congress spokesman called the rally "a political stunt". The Congress spokesperson Janardhan Dwivedi said the Finance Minister has already explained in Parliament how the government plans to combat black money.
6. It took the police five hours to move Baba Ramdev through the 3-4 kilometres from the flyover where he was arrested to Ambedkar Stadium in central Delhi.
7. Baba Ramdev had not sought police permission to march towards Parliament. He had been authorised only to hold a large sit-in at Delhi's Ramlila Maidan.
8. When he started that camp five days ago, he declared he would not target a political party or personality. That changed dramatically today. He called for the dismissal of the Congress-led government for its alleged inability and disinterest in recovering crores of black money.
9. Baba Ramdev has been demanding a robust ombudsman law to keep checks on government, a strong and independent Central Bureau of Investigation and efforts to act against tax evasion and illegal money sent to banks abroad.
10. Last year, Ramlila Maidan was packed to capacity, when the police charged in at midnight to force the camp to disband. Many people were injured. The Supreme Court blamed both the Delhi Police and the charismatic guru for risking the safety of thousands.
Commuters advised to use the Bhairon Singh Marg and the Ring Road instead.
Baba Ramdev is meeting senior police officers. Delhi Police keen to ensure that his supporters disburse peacefully.
Nearly six hours after yoga guru Baba Ramdev was detained along with nearly 8000 supporters as he headed towards Parliament in a protest against corruption, the police has set the yoga icon and his supporters free.
- Whose responsibility is it to feed the people here?( crowd: Government's)
- This government does not love the people and a government that doesn't love its people has no right to rule.
- On terrorists this government is willing to spend Rs 25 crores.
- Any movement is victorious if the people support it
- And the people are with this movement
- Mulayam Singh, Mayawati, Naveen Patnaik, all NDA parties and BJP support our movement
Delhi Police lets off supporters of Baba Ramdev.
Devesh Srivastava, Additional Commissioner of Police, was heard saying, "All those detained are free to go now."
Police sources say while his supporters may be released soon, Baba Ramdev himself will be detained till further orders.
Yoga guru Baba Ramdev was arrested as he headed towards Parliament in a protest against corruption. He was surrounded by supporters, and was bussed away to the Ambedkar Stadium in Daryaganj. Rain, traffic and swelling crowds meant that it took the convoy of buses over 5 hours to traverse a distance of just 3-4 kilometres.
The police had initially planned to detain the yoga guru and 200 of his supporters at the Rajiv Gandhi stadium at Bawana in North-West Delhi. But they had to change plans after the convoy slowed down. The traffic situation went out of hand after rains and the huge crowds. Baba Ramdev was consulted and Ambedkar Stadium in nearby Daryaganj was chosen as an alternative location.
Baba Ramdev was perched on top of a vehicle moving slowly towards Parliament to allow his supporters on foot to keep pace. They were stopped at the Ranjit Singh Flyover, half a kilometre from Ramlila Maidan, where the yoga guru had been on a hunger strike for five days.
A Delhi Police constable climbed on top of the vehicle and placed his hand on the yoga teacher's arm to show Baba Ramdev was under arrest.
Baba Ramdev was carrying a national flag and was wearing a black band on his arm and across his forehead, like many of his supporters, in signal of their protest.
As he was being led away in a bus, Baba Ramdev, with his torso poking out of a window, said. "We will continue to fight this government... that is our strategy now." Hitting out at the Congress, he said, "This party has become a river of corruption and they have mines of black money. If that black money is recovered, this country will be heaven. But no one is willing to listen. We will tell people not only to defeat the Congress but also which candidates to vote for."
Baba Ramdev had not sought police permission to march towards Parliament. He had been authorised only to hold a large sit-in at Delhi's Ramlila Maidan.
When he started that camp five days ago, he declared he would not target a political party or personality. That changed dramatically today. He called for the dismissal of the Congress-led government for its alleged inability and disinterest in recovering crores of black money.
Political support was offered at his camp this morning by BJP president Nitin Gadkari, and Sharad Yadav of the JD(U). Both pledged their parties' support to the yoga icon.
The BJP also protested against black money in Parliament today, resulting in the adjournment of the Lok Sabha. The government has refused to engage with Baba Ramdev. The Congress spokesperson Janardhan Dwivedi said the Finance Minister has already explained in Parliament how the government plans to combat black money.
Last year, Ramlila Maidan was packed to capacity, when the police charged in at midnight to force the camp to disband. Many people were injured. The Supreme Court blamed both the Delhi Police and the charismatic guru for risking the safety of thousands.
Baba Ramdev spoke to NDTV from the top of the bus in which he was being taken to his makeshift jail, and here is what he had to say...
- This party has become a river of corruption and they have mines of black money. If that black money is recovered, this country will be heaven. But no one is willing to listen.
- We will tell people not only to defeat the Congress but also which candidates to vote for.
- Our plan is to save the country and end corruption. We have no political platform. We will fight from an ethical platform.
- I have neither eaten nor bathed for 5 days
Baba Ramdev's bus is still en route to the Ambedkar Stadium. Some buses carrying supporters have already arrived.
A few supporters who had already been taken to the Bawana stadium are also being shifted.
Police had to change plans after the convoy slowed down. The traffic situation went out of hand after rains and the huge crowds. Baba Ramdev was consulted and Ambedkar Stadium was chosen as an alternative location.
Baba Ramdev and his supporters being taken to the Ambedkar Stadium and not the stadium at Bawana
Baba Ramdev and his supporters are expected to be housed in the stadium for at least one day.
NDTV's Tanima Biswas reports -
- An air-conditioned room with a TV to accommodate Baba Ramdev and about 200 supporters. There are arrangements for food and refreshments for everyone.
- Around 60 buses expected at the Bawana stadium carrying 50 people each.
- The Rajiv Gandhi Stadium can accommodate around 10,000 people.
Janardhan Dwivedi says, "We did not say anything because we cannot speak their language or act like them. The whole country today saw the real faces behind this."
From inside one of the DTC buses, Baba Ramdev say, "We will continue to fight this government... that is our strategy now..."
The Delhi Police has stopped Baba Ramdev's protest towards Parliament near the Ranjit Singh flyover. The yoga guru began his march towards Parliament from the camp at Ramlila Maidan, just four kms away, where he has been on a hunger strike against corruption.
Baba Ramdev arrested en route to Parliament. Thousands of his supporters court arrest.
- We had decided that we would make the govt hear our voices by a hunger strike
- We were marching peacefully, now the police has stopped us.
- We respect the law
- The Delhi Police has to listen to the govt, they are puppets
- Congress' hand is not with us; these cops now say they'll take me away
Senior politicians Nitin Gadkari and Sharad Yadav gave VIP presence to yoga guru Baba Ramdev's protest camp in Delhi today, organised as a war-cry against corruption.
Nitin Gadkari speaks at Ramlila Maidan:
Baba Ramdev has no political intention. What is wrong in saying that bring back black money. Is it a crime?
Why is it taking so long to bring back black money? Look at the condition of our economy. We were dreaming of a 12 per cent growth rate, what we have is a five per cent growth rate. There is no economic growth, farmers are committing suicides. Look at the state of the country.
We are a rich nation with a poor population.
If black money comes back, it can be used for the betterment of the farmers, it can be used for the economy.
Tihar Jail should have all rooms equipped with ACs because those roaming the Central Hall of Parliament will head there.
The CBI has become the 'Congress Bureau of Investigation'.
I am with Baba Ramdev and his movement. This movement is for the future of our country. On the behalf of the BJP, I pledge full support. I have told Baba Ramdev -- We are with you.
I spoke with Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley today regarding this agitation and they have also extended their support to this agitation.
We have stopped work in both the houses of Parliament today as the Government was not able answer questions pertaining to corruption and Black money.
2G Spectrum scam, Commonwealth Games Scam - who is responsible? The files were signed by cabinet secretariat, PMO, Finance Ministry - only to blame only Raja or Kalmadi is not fair.
Why is the PM or Mr Chidambaram not responsible?
Sharad Yadav speaks at Ramlila Maidan: Why can't anybody see the honest politicians around? Why are we not moving ahead as a country? Only because a few people are holding the wealth of the nation.
We will definitely clean up Parliament. We are with you. Make the CBI an independent body. That will end corruption. The Lokpal Bill will not. Anna Hazare was a good man, he was a simple man, but people from Delhi misguided him.
Bringing back black money stashed away in foreign countries is the chief point on Baba Ramdev's anti-corruption agenda. It has also been an important point in the BJP's anti-corruption attack on the UPA government.
Baba Ramdev's fast is in its fifth day now. The presence of the NDA leaders is being seen as an attempt to offer the charismatic guru an exit route from a rally that has failed to generate heat or much public interest.
Baba Ramdev is expected to urge his supporters to march towards Parliament today from their sit-in camp at Delhi's Ram Lila Maidan. Sources in the police say they will stop the yoga icon and others after they've walked a short distance. A stadium nearby is being prepared as a make-shift jail.
- You can defeat one Ramdev but how will you defeat thousands and lakhs of Ramdev?
- We will have a peaceful march towards Parliament. We Respect Parliament and the honest Parliamentarians. We are not terrorists.
- We never wanted to take this step to go and protest outside Parliament. However, it is the government's apathy which has forced us.
- We will follow the principles of non-violence and expect the police also not to use force against us.
- This is going to a long and a tough fight .
- This great revolution has to be led by the youth as they have a lot of anger against the policies of the government.
- This government has only encouraged corruption and Black money
- Would like to thank the Media for the fair coverage
Yoga guru Baba Ramdev is expected to make a 'big announcement' on his next course of action today after four days of hunger strike. "Tomorrow there will be an announcement on the big revolution to be staged in the country.
Defending his attack on the Congress, Baba Ramdev said the party is responsible for what happened to the country as it was in power for a long period and cannot escape responsibility.
After sharing dais with Anna Hazare, former Army Chief V K Singh joined yoga guru Ramdev's protests on Sunday, dubbing the government as a "property dealer" which takes over farmers' land in the name of development. General Singh's participation in the protests came two months after he retired from service during which he had taken on the government on his age issue.
Yoga guru Baba Ramdev, who is on a fast at Delhi's Ramlila Ground demanding immediate steps to bring back black money, has warned the government that he is ready to be the first one to be arrested if required, and will go to jail if needed. He told his supporters that he would announce the next agenda for his movement tomorrow. "There will be a revolution and all of you need to stay here tonight as well," he said.
Intensifying his agitation against black money, yoga guru Baba Ramdev today has set a fresh deadline for the Centre to act on his demands. Putting onus on the Prime Minister, he said Manmohan Singh should intervene by this evening. He has threatened to launch 'revolution' if the government fails to act by the deadline set by him.
He also said that former Army chief General VK Singh would join him on stage tomorrow to express solidarity with the movement.
Yoga guru Baba Ramdev has threatened to intensify his agitation against the government if his demands on black money and Lokpal bill are not met by the deadline set by him. He will end his three-day fast today.
- Our principles will not change, but our strategy needs to change according to the time.
- Today evening we will decide the next step in our movement. If the government does not look into our demands we will go ahead with our movement full steam.
Baba Ramdev: They say Baba's andolan is a flop. 40,000 people have braved heat and rain; slept on wet ground. If this a flop show, then I want to know what is a successful campaign.
- The government officials, Ministers, MPs live off our money. We pay out taxes
- We've given the government seven suggestions to implement and bring back 'black money' to India.
- The government has admitted it has 36,000 pieces of information
- This information pertains to 9,900 foreign transactions
- They sometimes say there are 700 names, sometimes they claim there are 900 names...
- Even if there are minor differences, we will be happy if a consensus is reached and a strong Lokpal Bill is passed.
- We have given our agenda.
- Now it's time for all political parties to take a stand.
- We will not leave till they take a stand.
- The UPA needs to tell the country what their stand is on corruption.
- We have given them time till tomorrow.
Baba Ramdev: We never said pass the government Lokpal, we asked for a strong Lokpal, and to find consensus on it.
He has offered to train volunteers in his Haridwar Ashram so that they can go on a longer hunger strike.
He may have announced a three-day fast as part of his campaign against black money, but yoga guru Baba Ramdev says the movement is here to stay at least for the next 50 years.
On the first day of his protest camp at Delhi's Ramlila Maidan, 20,000 people gathered to support Baba Ramdev, establishing the yoga guru's star power. Many of the people in the audience travelled thousands of miles by bus or train. Indian flags were waved by young children. He will fast for three days while lobbying against corruption.
Apparently there is a candlelight march from Mumai's Azad Maidan at 7 pm. A big march is also planned in the evening today.
Also supporters at Ramlila ground announced that #Ramdev is trending at no.2 on twitter...
Ramdev has pulled thousands of people on the first day of his fast at the Ramlila Ground here.Differentiating himself from Anna's aides, who have attacked ministers and decided to launch their own political party, Baba Ramdev said that he has no political agenda and will not target any political party.
Our basic demands
- A strong Lokpal
- CBI, CVC, CAG and Election Commission need urgent reforms
- Get black money back to India
If we get black money back to India, people of this country will have to pay no taxes
We agree with Anna Hazare's social campaign
- After 5pm, whole of India will come out in support; those in Ramlila will continue to remain here and after 5 the entire India will take to the streets
- We will not comment on any person from this stage
- We have no political agenda
- People are not an issue.. the system needs to change
- The protests demanding Lokpal hasn't come to an end.. it is going to reach a completion
- Delhi police did not commit its earlier mistake, we are thankful to them
- We aren't against any political party
- I went to Gujarat to pay my respects to my political idols: Mahatma Gandhi and Vallabhbhai Patel
- I greet the friends from the media who are here with us; they are the fourth pillar of our democracy.
- We need a strong Lokpal - even if there 100% consensus , let's go ahead with 99%. The law can be ammended later.
- The appointment of the Lokpal has to be independent. We want a mazboot Lokpal, not a majboor Lokpal.
- Sarkari Lokpal like sarkari CBI is not acceptable.
- Pawan Bansal had spoken with me last time, I invite him to come this time and not give statements from a distance.
Tricolours are being waved, there are big Ramdev posters....
The Ramlila ground wears a festive air...
Baba Ramdev will be in and out of Delhi. Whether he will be on an indefinite hungerstrike or then join the relay fast is also not clear yet.
Baba Ramdev has only said so far, "I am a saint I don't have much needs, we eat very less and from today that will stop too."
Baba Ramdev has reached Rajghat, the memorial of Mahatma Gandhi. He was seen meditating with his supporters there