x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Two more arrested from Dubai march to support Hazare

Police have arrested two more Indian men after they participated in a march in Dubai to support Indian activist Anna Hazare's hunger strike in New Delhi for a stronger anti-corruption bill.

DUBAI // Two more men have been arrested in connection with a march to show solidarity with the Indian activist Anna Hazare, who is on a hunger strike in New Delhi pressing for a stronger anti-corruption bill.

The organiser of the pro-Hazare march at Dubai’s Al Mamzar Beach was arrested on Saturday night halfway through the walk. All three men are expected to appear in front of Dubai Public Prosecution.

 

A prosecution source said the men were accused of using technology to organise the walk.

More than 150 Indian nationals gathered on Saturday at about 8pm for a three-kilometre march in support of the 73-year-old activist, Mr Hazare, who has inspired tens of thousands of Indians to rally against corruption.

Walkers said Dubai Police units arrived at the scene and ordered everyone, except the organiser, to leave.

“We felt strongly about what is happening at home,” said one participant.

“Since we can’t go to India, we wanted to show our support without disrupting peace.”

Participants said police also demanded to see photographs taken at the event.

Later, the event organiser was interrogated at the Al Muraqqabat Police station for “illegally organising the march through Facebook”. Police sources said no permits had been obtained for the event.

Participants said the event was intended only to express solidarity with the anti-corruption movement in India.

The group of expatriates, including children, wore badges that read: “I support Anna”, and some carried Indian flags.

This has not been the first show of support from non-resident Indians in the UAE. Last week, a group of 12 expatriates travelled to New Delhi to fast with Mr Hazare and his supporters.

A couple of them were detained at a stadium for more than a day by the Delhi police. Some expatriates who have returned said that they plan to go back to India later this week.

In April, when Mr Hazare went on his first hunger strike in India’s capital, a group of more than 150 Indian men, women and children held a candlelight vigil at Dubai’s Jumeirah Open Beach for two hours.

salamir@thenational.ae