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Aug 17, 2011, 10.28 AM IST
Despite being offered release, Anna Hazare spent the night in Tihar Jail refusing to come out insisting on an unconditional release and permission to launch his fast at Jai Prakash Narain Park.
73-year-old Hazare, who is continuing his fast, is understood to have spent the night at one of the rooms in the Administrative Block of the jail premises along with his associate Arvind Kejriwal.
Hazare was offered released last night after the Delhi Police issued warrants of release for him and seven of his associates, almost 13 hours after they were picked up from the a flat in Mayur Vihar in east Delhi yesterday morning and remanded to seven days judicial custody.
The Gandhian's aide Manoj Sisodia came out of the jail last night and said Hazare told the authorities that he will come out of the prison only after a written unconditional permission is given to continue his fast at Jai Prakash Narain Park, where he was to launch his hunger strike yesterday.
This morning, sources said, Hazare got up at around 5.00 AM and was involved in a discussion with Kejriwal and his other associates who are in the prison along with him. Sisodia today said that the "We don't have any information on when he will come out."
Outside the jail premises, hundreds of people stayed through the night and expressed solidarity with Hazare and his campaign against corruption. R K Saxena, a school teacher, said: "I am here to support this great cause. Government must accept Anna's demand for the welfare of the country."
Shouting anti-corruption slogans and holding the national tricolour, people from all walks of life started coming in large numbers from early hours of the day and joined others who were standing outside the jail premises through the night.
Ashwaq, a 38-year-old businessman, said: "I am fasting with Anna and other supporters since yesterday. I will continue my fast till Anna is freed from the jail and all his demands are accepted by the government."
Morning walkers also joined the supporters demanding that the Government release Anna Hazare and his supporters. Rakesh, a student, said "I am fasting with Anna for the bill and to uproot corruption from the country".
"It is inhuman to punish Anna and others like this. He is fighting for the people and for the country. Government must pass Jan Lokpal bill," Rekha Lalwani, a DU student, said.
Meanwhile, additional security personnel were deployed outside the Tihar Jail, where hundreds of Hazare's supporters are camping. Around 30 police personnel in riot gear were deployed early this morning at the main gate outside the office of Director-General of Tihar prisons.
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