Thousands back Indian activist’s fast against graft

(REUTERS) –  At least 10,000 people gathered yesterday to support an anti-corruption social activist who has galvanised much of India against the government with his hunger strike.

Mr Anna Hazare, a 74-year-old activist, lay on a stage on his fourth day of fasting at an open ground in the capital, a hunger strike he says will continue until the government passes tougher anti-graft legislation.

At the open grounds, people distributed food to a crowd that included many middle-class office workers and young students.

There were signs the government, which has its own anti-corruption bill in Parliament, was looking for a compromise. “We are open to discussion, dialogue,” Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said yesterday.