Monday, 30th October 2017

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BJP parliamentarian flouts home quarantine

This was the second time in as many days that a BJP leader had ignored social distancing and lockdown norms

By Piyush Srivastava in Lucknow
  • Published 27.03.20, 2:12 AM
  • Updated 27.03.20, 2:12 AM
  • 2 mins read
People crowd at a grocery store in Kanpur on Thursday. (PTI)

A BJP parliamentarian from Firozabad, who had been asked to stay in home quarantine, stepped out on Thursday morning with a four-car convoy to distribute masks among villagers, flouting the Covid-19 lockdown now in force across the country.

According to purported video clips in circulation on social media, Firozabad MP Chandrasen Jadon allowed over 40 people to surround him for about 30 minutes and exchanged pleasantries with them while handing out the masks.

This was the second time in as many days that a BJP leader had ignored social distancing and lockdown norms since Prime Minister Narendra Modi repeatedly told people on Tuesday not to step out of home for 21 days.

Modi had said stepping outdoors would amount to inviting the virus home and warned that flouting the three-week restriction would take the country back by 21 years.

On Wednesday, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath had addressed a gathering of about 50 people standing close to each other in Ayodhya during rituals to shift the idol of infant Ram from its makeshift tent.

Adityanath had congratulated the gathering after the rituals, a step forward in the way towards the construction of a Ram temple.

The monk turned politician had also given a sermon on how to follow the lockdown protocol.

Jadon, his seven family members and security guards were among others who were taken for tests by the local administration because the MP had attended an event in Delhi where fellow party MP Dushyant Singh was present last week.

Dushyant had earlier attended an event in Lucknow where Kanika Kapoor, a singer who has tested positive for Covid-19, had performed.

According to doctors at the Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, Kapoor’s second test report on Tuesday showed she was still infected.

Jadon claimed his test report was negative. “I had gone to the vegetable market in Jasrana (about 10km from the MP’s home) to distribute masks to rural people but returned after distributing a few because a large number of people had gathered,” the MP said.

An aide to the MP said they had planned to distribute around a thousand masks but had been able to hand out only 200, as some local reporters had reached the spot by then.

An official in the local administration said the “MP, his family members and guards had been asked to stay in self-isolation as their test reports are still awaited”.

“We will conduct an inquiry into how he came out and then take action against him,” the official was quoted as telling reporters.

Awanish Awasthi, additional chief secretary, said in Lucknow the police had registered FIRs against 2,800 people under the penal code’s Section 188 for disobeying the lockdown order in force across the country.

No FIR has yet been filed against Jadon.