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Hazare kites fly high in Delhi sky
A child with a Tricolour at Ramlila Maidan on Sunday. (Ramakant Kushwaha)

New Delhi, Aug. 28: The Ramlila grounds had heaved with Anna Hazare supporters. This evening, India Gate witnessed the height of their adulation.

Scores of Anna kites, with alphabets A, N, N and A strung together using manja (abrasive thread) strings, flew over India Gate at dusk, the images captured on cellphones by thousands of the Gandhian’s supporters celebrating his victory in the “second war of Independence”.

“Anna ka naam aasmaanon pe chhaa jaaye (Anna’s name should spread across the skies),” said Dharmendra, a self-confessed fan flying one such kite.

Flying kites on Independence Day has been a Delhi tradition. But this evening, Anna’s supporters appeared to have taken over this bit of nationalist heraldry, too.

Scores of Tricolours fluttered in the sunset. A while ago, Hazare’s aides Kiran Bedi and Arvind Kejriwal had set the tone for the carousals, urging them to celebrate “the victory of the jan sansad (people’s assembly) over the Dilli sansad (Parliament).”

An overwhelmed T. Basa, a visitor from Itanagar, said the spectacle would adorn his Facebook album. “I feel glad the government passed the resolution (agreeing to Hazare’s demands). There are similar protests in all northeastern capitals too. It’s a public expression of frustration against corruption.”

Even a soldier of the army’s Madras Regiment, whose men guarded the Amar Jawan Jyoti (the flame for the martyrs of the Independence struggle), let go his stern posture for a moment: he took pictures of a kite along with the regimental black pom-pom and green beret in the frame.

A few kites got tangled, with some crashing into the moat around the monument. Supporters had to endure more than kites going down but took the hiccups in their stride.

Mani Tripathi had the glee wiped off his face when he realised that his cellphone had been picked. But the resident of Rewa in Madhya Pradesh still thought the trip was worth it. “From the patwari (keeper of land records) to the linesman, we farmers suffer corruption the most. It’s good Annaji showed politicians their place,” said Tripathi.

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