Ramdev’s anti Corruption Fast: New Face of Communal Politics
The police crackdown on people
assembled to participate on the anti corruption fast by Baba
Ramdev on the Sunday night, 5th June 2011, needs to be condemned
to no end. As the police methods are, brutal by there nature, in
their effort to evacuate the Ramlila ground, they did resort to
As his multi-crore rupee business comes under the scanner, the
spotlight is on yoga guru Baba Ramdev's vast health and lifestyle
empire, fed on low-fat, low-cholesterol, organic and herbal
From multi-grain wheat to ayurveda medicines, it's a rich basket
and claims to offer cures for lifestyle diseases like diabetes,
hyper-tension, blood pressure and disorders of the digestive
Amid an announcement by Ramdev, 46, that he would declare his
assets, a mood of despondency was palpable at the yoga teacher's
ayurveda pharmacies in the capital. One of the largest facilities,
Patanjali Chikitsyalaya in south Delhi at Laxmi Bai Nagar market,
wore a deserted look.
Officials at the healthcare centre were tightlipped about the
week's volume of business and trends. However, a devotee close to
the seer in the capital said "nothing could touch Ramdev's
The most popular health food brand marketed by Ramdev is health
wheat, Arogya Atta, a shopkeeper in the Chandni Chowk Market in
old Delhi told IANS.
"It is made of a combination of nine grains, including bajra, corn
and lentil extract. Breads rolled out of wheat is a whole meal in
itself," the shopkeeper said.
Last year, several union ministers visited Haridwar to inaugurate
Ramdev's Patanjali Ayurveda Hospital.
Union minister Subodh Kant Sahay inaugurated a herbal and organic
food park spread over 95 hectares. The Rs.500 crore park had begun
growing and extracting compounds of aloe vera, Indian gooseberry,
citrus fruits, vegetable and herbs.
Ramdev's first ayurvedic medicine counter, Divya Pharmacy, was set
up in Haridwar in 1995. Since then, it has spread across the
Statistics cited by Patanjali Yogpeeth say that New Delhi and the
national capital region have 30 pharmacies that sell at least 50
varieties of medicines made of herbs.
These have not been without controversy. Over fice years ago,
Ramdev was accused of using bone extracts for his drugs but the
allegations died down.
Most of the drugs bearing traditional names like Divya Arashkalp
Boti, Divya Ashmarir Ras, Divya Udar Kalp Churna, and "ivya Churna
are prescribed by the 'vaid' at the pharmacies in combination with
strict diets of bottle gourd juice, bitter gourd juice, gooseberry
juice, herbal pastes, neem extract, turmeric, multi-grain bread,
low-calorie vegetables, fruits and milk.
The 5,000-year-old science of ayurveda, as prescribed by Vedic
scholar Patanjali, scaled new heights under Ramdev and his aide
Acharya Balkrishna, of course riding on the alternative lifestyle
fad in India.
The hugely popular yoga guru, who has become a familiar face due
to TV yoga, has been in the limelight since a police crackdown on
him and his supporters in the capital last weekend that also saw
him evicted from Delhi.