As many as 500 people were booked under disaster management and epidemic diseases acts after a Tazia procession was taken out on the occasion of Muharram without police permission in Khambhat town of Anand on Sunday evening.
According to police, an FIR was filed at Khambhat Town police station on Sunday evening after a procession of around 500-600 people was taken out on the occasion. The police action came after videos of the procession event surfaced on social media which the police took cognizance of.
The purported videos show norms of social distancing being violated and the ‘mourners’ who were part of the Tazia procession were also without masks. However, no arrest or detention has taken place even 24 hours after the FIR as police claimed that they are verifying identity of those seen in the videos.
According to Ajit Rajian, superintendent of police, Anand, “No permission was sought or given for the public event that is why we have registered an offence. When Unlock 4.0 guidelines were being introduced, a notification from Anand collector office had clearly said that no permission will be given for any public celebration event.”
Speaking to The Indian Express, D S Gohil, in charge officer of Khambhat town police station, said, “An FIR has been lodged against the accused persons under Indian penal code section 188 for disobedience to order given by a public servant and sections of the Epidemic Diseases Act and Disaster Management Act. We have not detained or arrested anyone yet as we are still identifying those part of the procession. Once they are detained, a fine of Rs 1,000 each for not wearing masks will also be levied.”
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