Protests in India against government corruption

Thousands of people marched through New Delhi and several other Indian cities on Sunday to protest against corruption in the country's government and state bodies.

Public anger has grown over the long-standing issue of graft in India after a series of high-profile scandals and revelations of financial mismanagement that have damaged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's administration.

The rallies in Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and other cities called for an effective anti-corruption agency to be set up to counter the culture of bribes and scams that affect the everyday lives of many Indians.

"This campaign is neither aligned to nor against any political party," the umbrella group organising the protests said in a statement.

"We feel that every political party has misused its position whenever they have been in power or otherwise. Therefore, it is extremely important that the citizens of this country unite to demand systemic changes."

Recent corruptions scandals include the cut-price sale of mobile phone licences, which may have cost the treasury as much as ê40 billion, and allegations of widespread corruption related to the 2010 Commonwealth Games.

About 5,000 people attended the rally in central Delhi with other similar gatherings in cities across India on the anniversary of the death of independence leader Mahatma Gandhi, who was shot dead in 1948.

Demonstrators carried placards reading "Sack and jail the corrupt" and "Enough is enough".

Politicians and business leaders have said corruption in India is slowing development and threatening the country's future economic prosperity.

Print Email