India's yoga guru ends his anti-corruption fast

June 12, 2011 11:18

NEW DELHI - Popular yoga guru Swami Ramdev on Sunday called off his eight-day-old hunger strike to denounce corruption after a prominent spiritual figure persuaded him to end his action, local media said.

Ramdev had pressed on with the fast at his ashram, or spiritual center, after police last week used batons and tear gas to disperse a hunger strike by him and his followers in New Delhi. The crackdown was condemned by opposition parties on the left and right.

Ramdev, who travels by private jet and boasts a daily television audience of 30 million, was admitted to hospital on Friday suffering from a low pulse rate and dehydration. His condition prompted concern from both his followers and government officials.

Swami Ramdev won backing from followers for his initiative to act against corruption, but criticism had grown over some of his recent statements in which he asked supporters to take up arms.

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