Violating the lockdown orders, hundreds of people participated in the Siddhalingeswara temple chariot festival in Chitapur village in Kalburgi area of Karnataka on early Thursday morning.
The village is just four kilometers away from Wadi which has been declared a COVID-19 hotspot and was sealed off. The procession was taken out despite temple authorities assuring the police that no such event will take place, according to The New Indian Express.
A case was registered, not before 4pm, against organisers of the event and further investigation is going to ascertain more details related to the religious gathering. Meanwhile, a sub-inspector has been suspended. The New Indian Express also reports the case was only registered after videos of the event were circulated on social media questioning the authorities.
Kalburgi reported the first COVID-19 death in the country and currently there are 18 active cases of the virus in the district. Thirty-six cases of coronavirus were reported in Karnataka on Thursday, taking the state’s tally to 315.
The incident comes after thousands of people in Tamil Nadu’s Madurai took to the streets to join a long procession for the funeral of a bull on April 13.
The jallikattu-cum-temple bull in a village in Alanganallur in Madurai breathed its last on 12 April. Despite state governments orders to keep funerals a low-key affair with less than 10 close relatives, the villagers defied the orders and attended the funeral in large numbers. Bulls in Alanganallur and other villages such as Palamedu, Avaniapuram are highly revered and seen as the pride of the land.
Madurai District Collector TG Vinay told that 3,000 people who were part of the procession have been booked for violating Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) and social distancing norms, reported news agency ANI. Madurai has recorded over 41 COVID-19 positive cases, as on 15 April. Tamil Nadu has reported a total of 1,242 coronavirus cases, with 12 deaths.