Anna Hazare makes it to the tourism circuit

New Delhi, April 14 (Agencies): The unprecedented success of Anna Hazare’s ‘India Against Corruption’ campaign has put his model village Ralegansiddhi, near Pune, on the must-visit list of the “enlightened”. Ever since he came back from Delhi after forcing the Centre to agree to redrafting the Lokpal Bill, a large of number people have been heading to the village to meet the revolutionary man and understand the Gandhian’s development model, that has been successfully implemented in the village.
Anna has nurtured Ralegansiddhi all his life. In 1975 he introduced rain water harvesting and subsequently other environment conservation initiatives to make the village a world renowned example of self-sustained development model. Sensing a business opportunity, tour operators in Pune have even started package tours to Hazare’s model village, located in Parner taluka of Ahmednagar district, some 70 kilometers from Maharashtra’s cultural capital.
Hazare’s impact on the national consciousness can be gauged from the fact that among those who are heading to his village are people from all walks of life. Be it IT professionals, industrialists, doctors and even school students, everybody is on the Anna bandwagon. Armed with digital cameras and video-recorders, and a desire to offer their support for the anti-corruption crusade, the “tourists” have no qualms in shelling out Rs 600/per person for the trip. Clearly, the Anna fever has just started.